Alexander Hvaal earned his first victory in the FIA European Rallycross Championship on Sunday in Greinbach, Austria. The 20-year-old Norwegian took the lead when Liam Doran's car caught fire on the fourth lap giving Hvaal the opportunity he needed.
After Doran's Citroën left the track with flames and smoke spewing out the back, Hvaal seized control for the final two laps and took the win. Hvaal's Hansen Motorsport teammate and overall points leader Timur Timerzyanov of Russia finished second. French driver Davy Jeanney was third.
"This is an amazing feeling " Hvaal said in a release. "The car felt so good all weekend and I was delighted with my qualifying performance, but climbing to the top step of the podium is a dream come true, champagne never tasted so good."
Timerzyanov's finish allowed him to improve his points lead over second-place Jeanney with one round to go next weekend in Germany. Timerzyanov has 161 points to Jeanney's 141. Swedish driver Timmy Hansen, who did not reach the final, is third with 138 points.
"To finish second from the back of the grid is a great result, the best we could get, so I'm happy with that," Timerzyanov said in a release.
Stig-Olov Walfridson of Sweden was fourth, Doran fifth and Norwegian driver Petter Solberg sixth as he failed to make it off the starting line.
The final round of the European Rallycross Championship will take place Saturday, Sept. 22, at Estering, near Buxtehude, Germany.