Before we get into this list, it has to be said that not only were we lucky to have any kind of World Rallycross season at all this year, it also turned out to be one of the best in the series’ short history, helped in no small part by the constant uncertainty surrounding it.
But of course, 2020 has been a year like no other, and naturally, that led to a few things missing from the World RX season.
Here’s our pick of what we missed the most from this year’s World RX season
What do you mean we missed Hell? 2020’s been tough for most of us…
Granted, many tracks lost their slots on the calendar this year, but Hell in Norway has to be a standout. It’s a classic venue, and one that’s been a part of World RX since the beginning.
It’s given us some of the most thrilling races in the history of the championship – including one of our all-time favorites. Our 2020 championship contenders have often run well there, Kristofferson winning in 2017 and ‘18 and Ekstrom scoring two podiums from five starts, while the likes of Timmy Hansen, Andreas Bakkerud, and Liam Doran have also shone at the Central Norway track.
At a time when many newer venues are joining the calendar, the absence of this fan – and driver – favorite was certainly felt.
A proper finish to the championship fight
The 2020 season gave us one of World RX’s best-ever championship fights, but with 60 points still up for grabs and Johan Kristoffersson ‘only’ holding a 27-point lead at the time World RX of Germany was canceled, you can’t help but feel ever-so-slightly robbed of a good finish to the year.
Granted, Kristoffersson is Kristoffersson, and with the form he’s been in for the last four years, you’d have to have been a fool to bet against him. But rallycross is unpredictable, and with a rejuvenated Timmy Hansen returning to form at Barcelona and upsetting the order, it’s anyone’s guess what could’ve gone down in Germany.
Speaking of Germany…
The Nürburgring is no stranger to the world of Rallycross, having hosted the FIA Inter-Nations Cup in 1992 and 1993, but it had never hosted a World Championship round – that was set to change in 2020.
Firstly it was scheduled for August, before later being shifted to December – a move that could’ve inadvertently led to World RX’s first true ice race.
The track that the Nürburgring was supposed to use was largely similar to the layout from the 1990s, albeit reversed, so it’d satisfy team and promoter demands for better facilities, while scratching the fanbase’s nostalgia itch too.
It could’ve been a very good event, and with the uncertainty, a fitting end to a thrilling season. Alas, it was not to be. Maybe next year?
Now, of course every round – bar the hastily-added Finland – featured support racing, but the early end to the season meant that neither of the European championships (Supercars and Super1600) were awarded.
It marked the first time since its inception in 1976 that there wasn’t a European Rallycross champion, and the first time since 1979 when the GT Division was introduced that there hasn’t been a second-string champion either.
Naturally, since the World championship’s formation in 2014, the European side of things has taken something of a back seat, but both the Supercars and S1600 divisions are as relevant and as entertaining as ever. Of course, the early end to the season couldn’t have been predicted, but it was a crying shame to not see either title awarded.
A proper electric preview
We keep being told that electric is the future of rallycross, despite mixed responses across the board. The Americans seem to be on the right path, but with the advent of Projekt E for 2020 we were going to get a first glimpse at how electric rallycross from a European perspective was going to look.
Sadly, what we saw was somewhat underwhelming. Sure, the on-track battles were just as good as those in Supercars, but there was no big leap that is more than possible with electric power. And with small grids – caused in-part by the pandemic – the races had a tendency to get dull and spread out quickly.
Electric rallycross has the potential to be something really special. Sadly the soft opening we were treated to in 2020 just wasn’t quite what had been promised.