Former Subaru, Citroen and Hyundai World Rally Championship driver Chris Atkinson is plotting a full-time move to the World Rallycross Championship for 2016.
The Australian, who partnered reigning World RX champion Petter Solberg with the works Subaru squad, scored a career best WRC finish of second on Rally Mexico and Rally Argentina in 2008.
Since the Japanese manufacturer withdrew from the WRC, Atkinson has run sporadically with a variety of teams, including Citroen’s junior and works outfits and most recently two events with Hyundai last year, finishing seventh in Mexico and 10th on Rally Australia.
“I think the World RX concept is great,” he said.
“I’ve always thought rallycross was a really sweet format and you can see that now with the way the World Rallycross Championship is growing.
“Manufacturers are coming into it and it’s evolving to the stage where it’s becoming a lot more professional.”
Atkinson, who also contested Rally Mexico in 2012 with World RX podium finisher Ken Block’s Ford outfit, sampled Supercar Lite machinery earlier this year, during the launch of a domestic rallycross series in Australia.
“WRC cars are incredible but these rallycross cars have pretty much double the power of a WRC car,” Atkinson said.
“Everyone who’s driven one says it just blows your mind. You know, zero to 100 kilometres per hour in 1.8 to two seconds – anytime you’re doing that, it’s impressive.
“Racing would be crazy fun, you’re basically in a weapon with eight other lunatics hoping you come out of the first corner.”