Nitrocross Round 7 at Glen Helen Raceway

They had so much fun yesterday, they ran it back again today! Round 7 at Glen Helen was set to pick up where Round 6 ended, except with a couple of debuts taking place. However, the round couldn’t have gotten started until the drama between Bakkerud and Eriksson was revisited and examined once again, pointing out each incident involving the two, leading me to believe they are trying to build the whole thing into more than it really is. I could be wrong though. More on all of that later though.

Things got started with the battle for the Top Qualifier position pitting Robin Larsson, Fraser McConnell, Bakkerud and Eriksson against each other in a heated battle. Larsson looked poised to earn the TQ and the belt that goes along with it but, McConnell had other ideas, making a last turn pass on Larsson giving him the checkered flag. 

Semi Final 1 provided more drama when Oliver Eriksson ran Bakkerud wide in turn 1. Bakkerud then pulled the same move on Eriksson heading into the next turn. Robin Larsson would go on to win the semi and get the transfer to the Final. Bakkerud took second and Eriksson came home third. Brian Deegan rounded out the field in fourth. 

Semi Final 2 saw Lia Block make her debut in the Group E category. Fraser McConnell took an early lead over Conner Martell after Kevin Eriksson took an early joker. McConnell and Eriksson banged doors coming to the checkered flag, finishing in a drag race down the front straight that saw Eriksson win. Block’s debut earned her a fourth place finish. Viktor Vrankx, the other young gun making his debut this weekend, held on for a third. 

Kainan Baker’s debut in NXT came with some growing pains. In the Semifinal, Kainan failed to launch off of the line due to stalling. The Semifinal being a positioning race for the Final was of little consequence. However, I’m growing to like the future of this category more and more as new drivers make their way in. Baker did score a win in the SXS Final.

In the first LCQ, the notable result was Viktor Vrankx edging out Andreas Bakkerud, ending the Monster Energy RX Cartel driver’s weekend. Martell, Vrankx and Deegan all transferred in to the Main. The second LCQ was a positioning race with all three drivers making the final, which would be a mark in history for Nitrocross as Lia Block was slated to become the youngest and first female driver in Nitrocross to make a Main. However, after hitting the gap jump, she experienced a technical error and had to pull off. Unfortunately, the car couldn’t be repaired for her to make the grid in the Final. Fraser McConnell and Oliver Eriksson has a great battle for the win but McConnell came out on top in the fight.

The Group E Final was pretty tame in comparison to some of the past few races. Early in the race, Oliver Eriksson saw his weekend come to an early end while battling with Fraser McConnell after striking a tire barrier. Robin Larsson managed to hold off McConnell and Kevin Eriksson, scoring his third win this season and extending his points lead heading into the short break before Calgary. Viktor Vrankx continued picking up pace and managed a P4, just outside of the podium.

That wraps up Nitrocross in Glen Helen. The next stop this season is in Calgary, February 2-3. A short break for the holidays and time for the drivers to get ready for the home stretch. The championship battle is still close with Larsson, Eriksson and McConnell in the fight. Calgary will be a dog fight on the ice and snow.

Copyright © 2022 Allen Keith  – All Rights Reserved.