Tom Blomqvist has upset Shane Van Gisbergen and reigning World RX champion Timmy Hansen to snare victory in the second round of the World RallyCross Invitational Eseries.
Staged around the 1.0km Hell circuit in Norway, Blomqvist entered the final with an outside chance of victory with Hansen the firm favourite having claimed wins in all four heats and semi-finals. Van Gisbergen meanwhile, had proved to be Hansen’s sole competitor.
Taking his compulsory joker on the opening lap, Van Gisbergen relinquished the lead to Hansen who opted to cover off the Supercars champion the following lap.
Though the Swedish driver would almost immediately hand back the position to Van Gisbergen after running wide a handful of corners later.
However, Hansen’s and Van Gisbergen’s feud allowed Blomqvist, who had inherited the lead courtesy of everyone else taking their joker laps, to push ahead unrivalled and in clean air.
The GT ace would take his joker lap on his final tour and emerged ahead of a surprised Van Gisbergen to clinch a maiden virtual RX victory.
Van Gisbergen’s second-place finish means he extends his points advantage ahead of Hansen who would hang on to claim fifth.
Blomqvist had initially finished fifth in his semi-final but was elevated into the final after several drivers were dealt time penalties for collisions.
Kiwi rally star Hayden Paddon finished an uncharacteristic 13th overall having suffered a turbulent four heat races.
Meanwhile, Supercars regular Scott Pye continues his difficult run of form in the virtual series finishing 11th out of the 16 entries.
The third round of the World RX Esports Invitational series will take place next weekend from a virtual Holjes circuit in Sweden.