94. Inaugural Rallycross at Daytona International Speedway fast & furious, but doesn't draw crowd

Top 100 Local Stories of 2014 / Headline Surfer®
 
Rhys Millen salutes the fans at Daytona International Speedway after his Rallycross win / Headline Surfer®YouTube download videos by KTrain2787 & Buddybryan3 
Raw clips from Daytona International Speedway show several hundred spectators cheering on Rallycross racers, including winner Rhys Millen who salutes them after winning the final heat in the heat of the sunshine state.

DAYTONA BEACH, Fla. -- Rhys Millen took the checkered flag in the inaugural Red Bull Global Rallycross at Daytona International Speedway in August.

But there wasn't much of a crowd to cheer to cheer him on. In fact, the mighty Speedway, which holds upwards of 190,000, was lucky if there were a hundred spectators. But the spectators who dared challenge the hot Florida sun in two bleacher sections saw Rhys Millen take the checkered flag in this high-flying race on dirt and asphalt, even as his engine failed on the final lap.

With the win, Millen became the fifth different winner in six races in this daredevil motor-sport series, featuring souped-up compact cars that look somewhat like the racing demons in the movie series, "The Fast & The Furious."

Rallycar racing at Daytona International Speedway / Headline Surfer®Cars leave the asphalt and head onto the dirt. In the inset, cars trade paint down the stretch.

 

Millen's win comes in at No. 94 in the HeadlineSurfer.com countdown of the top 100 local stories of 2014.

Driving for his own Hyundai-backed team, beat Hoonigan Racing Division’s Ken Block and Subaru Rally Team USA’s Bucky Lasek to the line.

“To my team, really is where I need to tip my where I tip my hat,” Millen said.

Having qualified fourth, Millen overcame a cam belt failure in the previous day's heats to take the win in his semifinal and earn the top starting position in the main event here under a hot Saturday sun.

“The car put a huge smile on my face in our test (earlier int the week)" he said. "We came here and, in the first time all year that we had a track this long, we were very surprised with where we were and how amazing the car brakes and turns into tight corners. That was the recipe to get the job done here.”

Rallycross driver Rhys Millen gives the No.1 signal after his win at Daytona / Headline Surfer®“To my team, really is where I need to tip my hat,” Rhys Millen said after his Rallycar win Saturday, Aug. 23, at Daytona International Speedway. “The car put a huge smile on my face in our test on Monday. We came here and, in the first time all year that we had a track this long, we were very surprised with where we were and how amazing the car brakes and turns into tight corners. That was the recipe to get the job done here.”

Rallycar race at Daytona / Headline Surfer®Photos for Headline Surfer® /
At far left, a car flies off a dirt ramp while another sits stalled. In the inset, the several hundred fans enjoy the jumps and fender rubbing at the Rallycross race. The crowd is huddled in a fenced in area of the infield while the massive grandstands were empty.
 
Here was the order of finish in the Aug. 23 Rallycross at Daytona:
1. Rhys Millen, #67 Hyundai/Rhys Millen Racing Veloster Turbo;
2. Ken Block, #43 Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta ST;
3. Bucky Lasek, #81 Subaru Rally Team USA WRX STI;
4. Patrik Sandell, #18 Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST;
5. Sverre Isachsen, #11 Subaru Rally Team USA WRX STI;
6. Tanner Foust, #34 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Polo R;
7. Joni Wiman, #31 Olsbergs MSE Ford Fiesta ST;
8. Nelson Piquet Jr., #07 SH Racing Rallycross Ford Fiesta ST;
9. Austin Dyne, #14 Barracuda Racing Ford Fiesta;
10. Scott Speed, #77 Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross Polo R;
11. Emma Gilmour, #27 Hyundai/Rhys Millen Racing Veloster Turbo;
12. Steve Arpin, #00 Royal Purple Racing/OMSE2 Ford Fiesta;
13. Pat Moro, #59 Chevrolet Sonic Racing/PMR Motorsports Sonic.
 

Top 100 Countdown of 2014 / Headline Surfer®RECAP

The HeadlineSurfer.com Countdown of the Top 100 Local Stories of 2014...

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Short Bio

Henry Frederick is publisher of Headline Surfer®, the award-winning 24/7 internet news outlet covering the Daytona Beach-Sanford-Orlando metro area via HeadlineSurfer.com since 2008. A longtime cops & courts reporter focused on breaking news & investigative reporting, Frederick is among the Sunshine State's most prolific daily news reporters, having amassed close to a hundred award-winning byline stories narly eveenly split in print and digital platforms. Frederick earned his Master of Arts in New Media Journalism with academic honors from Full Sail University in Winter Park in February 2019. He was a metro reporter with the Daytona Beach News-Journal for nearly a decade and then served as a city editor for the Taunton Daily Gazette in Taunton, Mass, while maintaining a residence in Central Florida. Prior to moving to Florida, Frederick was a metro reporter for the Rockland Journal-News in Wst Nyack, NY, for seven years. Headline Surfer was named the Sunshine State's top internet news site by the Florida Press Club in 2018.