World RX fire destroys cars and cancels Lydden Hill action

Special One Racing's Lancia Delta Evo-Es were both destroyed in a fire on Friday

Sebastien Loeb, Klara Andersson, Gustav Bergstroem and Timo Schneider

The first day of World Rallycross Championship action at Lydden Hill has been canceled due to a service area fire affecting Special One Racing and its Lancia Delta Evo-Es.

The cars, driven by Guerlian Chicherit and nine-time World Rally champion Sébastien Loeb, caught ablaze on Friday morning as well as plenty of the team’s equipment.

Nobody was injured in the fire, but the two cars – built as an homage to Lancia’s legendary Group A rally car – were both destroyed.

This weekend is the first time World RX has visited what’s seen as the home of rallycross since 2017, when Petter Solberg won his final race in the championship.

But this year’s meeting hangs in the balance as investigations continue into the cause of the fire.

In a statement, World RX said: “Following a fire in the service area of the Special One Racing team at Lydden Hill Racing Circuit in Kent, England today (Friday 21 July), the FIA World Rallycross Championship races scheduled for tomorrow (Saturday 22 July) will not take place while investigations continue regarding the cause of the fire.

“This incident does not affect the FIA RX2e Championship or Motorsport UK British Rallycross Championship 5 Nations Trophy, which will continue as planned.

“A decision regarding Sunday’s scheduled World RX races will be made on Saturday.”

Special One Racing is one of five teams competing in World RX this season, alongside Hansen World RX Team, Volkswagen Dealerteam Bauhaus, Construction Equipment Dealer Team and Münnich Motorsport.

Reigning and five-time champion Johan Kristoffersson has won all three rounds so far.

Words:Luke Barry