|ESPN.com: X Games LA 2012||[Print without images]|
The field of competitors for Sunday's RallyCross event at X Games Los Angeles 2012, which already included a deep mix of veteran rally drivers and crossover action sports heroes, just got more interesting. On Friday, Travis Pastrana announced that his friend and Red Bull teammate Bryce Menzies has been added to the list of invited athletes [Pastrana sees him as something of an ally in the race], and on Monday eight-time World Rally Championship champion Sébastien Loeb confirmed he'll also be making his X Games debut this weekend.
Menzies, who makes his home in Nevada and will be driving the same model Dodge Dart as Pastrana, is a newcomer to rally car racing: Just a few days ago he took to Twitter to announce, "Off to Seattle for a day at Dirt Fish rally school. Time to learn some rally moves." On Tuesday he was seen taking his first test runs on the X Games course.
If anyone can become an X Games podium threat in such short order, it just might be Menzies: The off-road truck racer was named 2011 Driver of the Year by Dirt Sports Magazine after winning the championship title in his rookie year competing in the Pro 2-Wheel Drive Class on The Off-Road Championship [TORC] Series. Menzies is ranked third overall on the 2012 Traxxas TORC series, and won the Baja 500 in Mexico earlier this month.
Loeb, also among Pastrana's Red Bull teammates, is another late addition to the X Games RallyCross mix: The French driver has now won a lifetime total of 72 WRC events [Loeb's website boasts that he's a "habitual offender"] and is one of the most decorated athletes in the sport. He's already won several WRC events in 2012, including the Monte Carlo Rally, Rally Mexico, Rally Argentina, Acropolis Rally of Greece, and, most recently, the Rally New Zealand. He'll make his X Games debut -- and mark his first visit to the United States -- this weekend, driving a Citroen DS3 XL.
"I will be trying to win," Loeb said, in a statement on Monday. "Obviously I have to challenge Travis, who has invited to me to compete against him and the various drivers there. Hopefully I won't look ridiculous!"
|Sébastien Loeb celebrates winning the WRC Acropolis Rally on May 27 in Loutraki, Greece.|