Honda Civic GRC Teams End 2017 with a Tough Outing in LA

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OMSE Honda Civic on the Track in LA

The Olsbergs MSE Honda Civic Global RallyCross teams ended a strong sophomore season with a tough outing in Los Angeles.

The 2017 Global RallyCross season wrapped up last weekend in Los Angeles and while the LA event didn’t end the way that the Olsbergs MSE Honda Civic GRC drivers had hoped, it was a solid second year for the team. After a handful of podium finishes in their inaugural season in 2016, the OMSE Honda team got their first event win in 2017, along with more podium finishes and the best-ever finish by a rookie in the championship race.

Two Honda Civics Battle in LA

The Port of LA

The 2017 GRC final event in Los Angeles was not a great one for the Olsbergs MSE Honda Civic drivers. After struggling in most of the heat races – finishing at or towards the rear of the field in the second and third heat rounds – the Red Bull Hondas had to settle for unsavory starting positions in the 10-car finale field. The Civics were in the hunt in the early-going, but just three laps in, Oliver Eriksson dropped out of the race, leaving only Sebastian Eriksson and Mitchel deJong to battle the field of Fords, Subarus and VWs.

Foust Leads the GRC Field in LA

The final race was dominated by the series-leading Volkswagens of Tanner Foust and Scott Speed as the teammates battled for the championship. Foust won the race, but in finishing second, Speed claimed his second-straight GRC Supercars championship title. Meanwhile, the OMSE Honda Civics of Mitchel deJong and Sebastian Eriksson finished sixth and seventh while Oliver Eriksson finished tenth in the ten-car field.

A strong second season

While the 2017 GRC season didn’t end as well as the OMSE team had hoped, this was a good season for the Honda Civic rallycross team. Sebastian Eriksson scored the first win for the team in Louisville and pulled down a handful of podium spots to finish fourth in the championship race. In his rookie season, Mitch deJong posted several third place finishes en route to a fifth place finish in the season standings – the best finish by a GRC Supercars rookie. Finally, 18-year old newcomer Oliver Eriksson posted a season-best fourth place finish in Indianapolis along with several strong runs during the season, allowing him to finish sixth in the championship race.

OMSE Honda Civic Supercars in LA

With the dominance of the Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross team drivers Tanner Foust and Scott Speed coupled with decades of rally excellence from the Subaru and Ford teams, cracking into the rallycross ranks hasn’t been easy for the OMSE Honda team. However, with the experience gained during the 2017 GRC season, proving that they know how to win, the Honda Civic entries could be far more formidable foes next season.

The Back of an OMSE Honda Civic

A lifetime automotive expert, diehard Dodge fan, and respected auto journalist for over 10 years, Patrick Rall is highly experienced in the automotive world. He has clocked in time as an auto mechanic, longtime drag racer and now auto journalist who contributes to nearly a dozen popular websites dedicated to fellow enthusiasts.

“Before I was old enough to walk, my dad was taking me to various types of racing events, from local drag racing to the Daytona 500,” says Rall. “He owned a repair shop and had a variety of performance cars when I was young, but by the time I was 16, he was ready to build me my first drag car: a 1983 Dodge Mirada that ran low 12s. I spent 10 years traveling around the country, racing with my dad by my side. While we live in different areas of the country, my dad still drag races at 80 years old in the car that he built when I was 16. Meanwhile, I race other vehicles, including my 2017 Dodge Challenger SRT Hellcat and my 1972 Dodge Demon 340.

“Although I went to college for accounting, my time in my dad’s shop growing up allowed me the knowledge to spend time working as a mechanic before getting my accounting degree, at which point I worked in the office of a dealership group,” adds Rall. “While I was working in the accounting world, I continued racing and taking pictures of cars at the track. Over time, I began showing off those pictures online and that led to my writing.

“Ten years ago, I left the accounting world to become a full-time automotive writer and I am living proof that if you love what you do, you will never ‘work’ a day in your life. I love covering the automotive industry and everything involved with the job. I was fortunate to turn my love of the automotive world into a hobby that led to an exciting career, with my past of working as a mechanic and as an accountant in the automotive world provides me with a unique perspective of the industry.

“My experience drag racing for more than 20 years coupled with a newfound interest in road racing over the past decade allows me to push performance cars to their limit, while my role as a horse stable manager gives me vast experience towing and hauling with all of the newest trucks on the market today.

“Being based on Detroit, I never miss the North American International Auto Show, the Woodward Dream Cruise and Roadkill Nights, along with spending plenty of time raising hell on Detroit’s Woodward Avenue with the best muscle car crowd in the world.”

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