Busy Weekend for Allmendinger as he makes Global Rally Cross run in Best Buy Ford Fiesta
25 - March 2011- Having put the Ford Fiesta to the test in the deep forest of the Team O’Neil Rally school in New Hampshire and scorched the pavement with Ken Block’s Ford Fiesta with Richard Petty as an interested observer, AJ Allmendinger has already had some pretty interesting experiences behind the wheel of Ford’s compelling compact car.
The affable NASCAR Sprint Cup regular will add yet another Ford Fiesta experience to his resume this weekend as he is set to drive multiple World Rally Champion Marcus Grönholm’s Best Buy Ford Fiesta in the Global Rally Cross Championship at The Revolution at Irwindale Speedway, just down the road from Auto Club Speedway in Fontana, California.
Allmendinger will take to the track on Saturday evening as a demonstration for the fans during the action-packed event weekend.
“When I first found out about this event, I really just wanted to come down and check it out,” said Allmendinger, who holds 16th in the NASCAR Sprint Cup standings ahead of Sunday’s Auto Club 400. “But then the next thing you know, I’m getting ready to get strapped into this 600+ horsepower Fiesta! I’m pretty excited to drive it on Saturday night, although I’m not so sure about trying it out in front of the huge crowd. Marcus is six-foot something, so I’m also hoping that they are able to move the seat a little bit forward for me. It’s also cool to have another event where Ford and Best Buy are so involved and I really think the fans are going to have a great time.”
Rallycross sees as many as six drivers line up to start at once, each piloting a high-horsepower compact car through race traffic over a challenging short course that features jumps, off-camber turns, hills and transitions between pavement and gravel. Drivers progress through a series of heat eliminations until the main event. Competitors race in either the two-wheel drive or all-wheel drive class in race-prepared, production-based vehicles. These are fast and nimble competition cars, with top-class competitors running 0-60 times in less than two seconds.
The innovative mixed-surface track also features a jump, something that is sure to add yet more excitement for the fans.
“No, no, nooooo,” said Allmendinger when asked about his taking to the air as part of his outing. “I got enough air last year at Talladega so I’m going to let the rally regular guys have that ALL to themselves!”
The race event is the first of a four round North American championship that will culminate at the X Games 17 in Los Angeles, CA July 31. Allmendinger will participate in some demonstration laps on Saturday evening as part of the intense race weekend.
-source: walldinger racing