Just another Manic Monday for fans of Red Bull Global Rallycross. After hints of a return on social media, AF Racing and Jackie Heinricher announced today that she will be joining the team to race in GRC Lites this season. Heinricher started driving in Lites last year with Rhys Millen Racing, competing in the first four events – Ft. Lauderdale, the Daytona double-header, and MCAS New River, then sat out the rest of the season. Having her return for the 2016 season means that the roster of women competing in Lites will potentially be the largest yet, as Collete Davis is also returning, Brian Deegan’s daughter Hailie has said she will compete, and we can hope that Sandra Hultgren – who raced in GRC Lites for the first time at the 2015 Las Vegas Championship – will return.
Why is it this a great thing? To have a growing field of women competing in GRC’s Lites development/feeder series means that very soon, these talented women will be experienced enough earn a spot and advance to Supercars – and Supercars will be less of a sausage party, more representative of the human population. Rolling your eyes? Well, think about it from a financial perspective: more women competing = more women interested and excited about the sport = coming and spending their $$ too. In a larger sport where some series are losing butts on seats and losing them fast, a growing, expanding audience is one of any series’ big goals.
Racer Jackie coming on board with Alejandro Fernandez was only the first part of AF Racing’s announcement. The team has added two more Lites cars with rookie drivers Travis Pecoy and Christian Brooks for 2016.
OTHER RACING NEWS:
- 17-year old Austin Cindric, who had eight GRC Lites podiums in 2015 – four of them wins – was in Australia racing his second Bathurst 12 Hour. He was the youngest to race in the endurance event in 2015. Driving the #63 Erebus Mercedes, he suffered a punctured tire in the last quarter, stuffing the Merc into the wall.
- Despite imminent development, Formula D will, in fact, have one last hurrah at Irwindale in 2016. The Final Fight is set for for October 7 – 8, 2016.
- 2015 Formula D Champion Frederic Aasbo has stated he will be back in full force in 2016 as Scion is rolled back into Toyota. No other specifics yet.
- Due to unseasonal warm weather, FIA World Rally Championship has been forced to postpone Rally Sweden recce to Wednesday and Thursday. The route has also been shortened from 331.31km to 241.48 in hopes of freezing weather returning for the winter rally. The Shakedown and Thursday night Special Stage have been cancelled, and the rally is down to 13 stages from 21. Organizers hope that the temperature goes back below freezing for a snowy rally, not a muddy rally.