Subaru Motorsports USA today announced a four-driver lineup for the final two rounds of the Americas Rallycross (ARX) season. With current championship leader Scott Speed recovering from a back injury sustained at August’s Nitro Rallycross (NRX) event, Subaru drivers Chris Atkinson and Patrik Sandell will be joined by current FIA World Rallycross Championship star Andreas Bakkerud and 2014 U.S. rallycross champion Joni Wiman at the season’s remaining rounds in Texas and Ohio.
Through four rounds of the six-event 2019 ARX season, Subaru has earned three event wins and six total podium finishes, with Speed sitting first in the championship standings and Atkinson and Sandell tied for third. However, after a hard landing at NRX caused a compression fracture in his spine, Speed will be forced to sit out the remainder of the 2019 campaign. Atkinson and Sandell will continue the championship fight for the remaining two rounds and will be joined by Bakkerud and Wiman in 600-horsepower Subaru WRX STI rallycross cars.
“Having to continue the season with Scott watching from the sidelines will be tough,” said Bill Stokes, Motorsports Manager for Subaru of America. “He has the team’s full support and we’re all looking forward to welcoming him back next season. At the same time, Andreas and Joni are two of the best rallycross drivers in the world – we’re excited to bring them in to compete alongside Chris and Patrik, and put even more top-level rallycross talent in front of U.S. fans.”
Andreas Bakkerud, currently sitting only a single point out of the overall lead in the World RX series, has compiled an impressive resumé over five full seasons in the world championship. The Norwegian’s win at the Canada round of World RX in August marked his seventh career Supercars victory as well as his fifth podium finish this year alone.
Joni Wiman, the Finnish driver who dominated the Lites class in the 2013 U.S. rallycross championship and went on to secure the 2014 Supercars title, also brings a strong background. His results in America include a total of ten podium finishes and an event win in Las Vegas in 2015. In his return to Supercars-level rallycross this year at World RX of Belgium, Wiman earned a semifinal win and a third-place finish in the final – sharing the podium with Bakkerud.
Atkinson, Sandell, Bakkerud and Wiman will compete at Texas’ Circuit of the Americas on September 28 and then in the season’s final event at Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course, October 5-6.
About Subaru Motorsports USA
Subaru Motorsports USA is managed by Vermont SportsCar and proudly supported by Subaru of America, Inc., Idemitsu Lubricants, Yokohama Tires, Method Race Wheels, DirtFish Rally School, KÜHL and RECARO. Follow the team online at www.subaru.com/motorsports.
About Subaru of America, Inc. Subaru of America, Inc. (SOA) is a wholly owned subsidiary of Subaru Corporation of Japan. Headquartered at a zero-landfill office in Camden, N.J., the company markets and distributes Subaru vehicles, parts and accessories through a network of more than 630 retailers across the United States. All Subaru products are manufactured in zero-landfill production plants and Subaru of Indiana Automotive, Inc. is the only U.S. automobile production plant to be designated a backyard wildlife habitat by the National Wildlife Federation. SOA is guided by the Subaru Love Promise, which is the company’s vision to show love and respect to everyone, and to support its communities and customers nationwide. Over the past 20 years, SOA has donated more than $145 million to causes the Subaru family cares about, and its employees have logged more than 40,000 volunteer hours. As a company, Subaru believes it is important to do its part in making a positive impact in the world because it is the right thing to do.