Many people closed out their 2013 SEMA week by taking in the season finale of the three-year-old Global Rallycross Championship (GRC) on Thursday, November 7. The series returned to Las Vegas for its ultimate round of the year, but unlike 2012 the ready-made parking-lot track was a bit further away from the trade show at the Las Vegas Convention Center, popping up on an empty lot across the street from the Luxor Hotel and Casino.
The podium was also different from last year's. The ubiquitous 'hoonigan,' Ken Block - in mid-hype mode for his Gymkhana 6 video, which drops November 11 - picked up the first win of his GRC career. He beat defending series champion Tanner Foust and Travis Pastrana for the victory. Fourth place finisher Toomas Heikkinen was crowned 2013 Global Rallycross champion after Round 8, having racked up five consecutive race wins, back-to-back gold medals, and eight podium appearances.
In the evening's 10-car final race, Foust, Block and Pastrana ran 1-2-3 from the start, holding strong at the head of the pack. Unfortunately for Foust, a jumped start penalty dropped him to second on the third lap, yielding the top spot to the driver of the Monster Energy Hoonigan Ford Fiesta. He then continued to extend his lead on Foust, with Pastrana trailing, which is how they crossed the stripe.
"It's been a bit of a tough year-I've had the speed but just haven't had the luck in the first turn," said Block. "Today I got a decent start, had some good luck in the first turn, and a unfortunately Tanner jumped the start, which gave us free reign for the win. It was fun battling with Travis earlier, fun battling with Tanner, but my team works incredibly hard, and it's great to finally give me and my team a win."
Eyes now turn to 2014, when the GRC begins a multi-year title sponsorship agreement with Red Bull. A schedule has been promised in the coming weeks. In the meantime, check out our gallery from the wild event.