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FIA World Rallycross Championship team GC KOMPETITION (GCK), founded by French athlete Guerlain Chicherit, will compete the in the 2019 championship with two permanent teams.
GCK entered their debut season in 2018 with two brand-new Renault Megane R.S. RX, before expanding the team to three vehicles at the US and German events. Building upon this successful debut season, GCK will now expand their operations to include four permanent drivers in 2019. Returning as GC KOMPETITION team-mate to team owner Chicherit in the GCK Megane R.S. RX is Swedish European Rallycross Champion Anton Marklund.
Joining the GCK squad for 2019 as part of the all new GCK Academy team are RX2 Champion Cyril Raymond (FRA) and RX2 Vice-Champion Guillaume de Ridder (BEL) who will campaign a 2019 evolution of the successful GCK Renault Clio R.S. RX. GCK has appointed French engineering company FORS Performance to facilitate all WRX race operations from 2019 for both teams.
Chicherit said he has created the ‘GCK Academy’ team with a vision to further young rallycross talent and support junior drivers, giving them the opportunity to compete on the world championship stage. Having witnessed the growth of the FIA World Rallycross Championship and the increasing difficulties junior drivers face to develop in World Championship cars, Chicherit decided to start the GCK Academy, entering his GCK Clio R.S. RX into World RX and adding two talented young race drivers to the GCK family.
Chicherit commented: “2019 is a really big year for GCK. We debuted the team in the FIA World Rallycross Championship in 2018 and have been working really hard to further develop the GCK Megane R.S. RX, the first car to have been designed and built from scratch to compete in rallycross.
“To now enter the Championship with four cars is a big step. It allows me to compete in the GCK Megane R.S. RX alongside Anton who I’ve been working with closely over the last few months but also to support two super talented junior drivers in Cyril and Guillaume to develop in a World Championship driving the GCK Clio R.S. RX. I’m really excited to see what the season will bring.”
Returning to the GCK Megane RS RX for 2019 Anton Marklund said: “I’ve been in contact with GCK since July 2018 meaning that we have had a lot of time to work together towards the upcoming season. “I raced the GCK Megane in the last three races of the 2018 season and worked with Guerlain to further put together a development list for the car. Then FORS Performance offered me to help them develop the GCK Clio during the winter which means I got to spend a lot of time and work closely with the team operating the cars this year.
“With all those opportunities ahead of this season, I already feel very much at home in the team. I’m sure that with the development and preparations we all have done during the winter, we have a good chance to race for top spots in the 2019 season. I want to thank Guerlain and Bilstein for their trust and support and can’t wait to get the season started.”
Following a successful 2018 rookie season in the FIA European Rallycross Championship, Raymond is aiming to consistently compete for top six positions and work closely with his new team-mate to bring success to the GCK Academy programme.
“My vision for 2019 is to improve my driving in supercars and to be a good teammate,” Raymond said. “I would like to show my potential behind the wheel but also in the paddock at work. My target is to be in the final of the every race. Joining GCK Academy is a really important moment of my career. I have finally become a race driver of the FIA World Rallycross Championship. It’s a dream come true. I’ll never forget this moment.”
Completing the GCK Academy roster, Belgium’s Guillaume de Ridder was identified by Guerlain Chicherit as a future World Rallycross star from when they both raced in RX2 during 2017. Throughout 2018 competitions the GCK owner monitored De Ridder closely with the intention of presenting a Supercar opportunity to the Belgian.
Excited by the opportunity, de Ridder said: “Joining the GCK Academy is an incredible opportunity for me. Being selected as one of the two junior drivers representing the team is an awesome recognition. It has been many years now that I have been working so hard and have given everything I had (sometimes even more than that!) in order to reach the highest level in motorsport, so it is finally a dream come true.
“I would like to thank Guerlain Chicherit and all the GCK team for the opportunity they are giving me and I will work even harder to show them they have made the right choice. I am extremely excited and I can’t wait to start working with such a professional and ambitious team.”