As the saying goes; success isn't something you achieve by accident, but rather by preparation. In motorsport especially, this couldn’t be more accurate.
The 2016 FIA World Rallycross Championship is zeroing in on its season ending event in Argentina in just under a fortnight’s time. While for each team in the paddock, simply completing the full 12-stop tour of events represents a huge effort, there is one squad that will arguably have more cause than most to reflect on a job-well-done this year.
Since the season began, high-up in the Portuguese mountains in April, the Hoonigan Racing Divison Team has successfully fielded two new and untested cars - and scored an incredible run of results including two wins and four podiums. What’s more it currently sits fourth in the Team’s standings. Not bad for a season that was largely chalked up as a development year.
Beginners luck? Not a chance. The team has been led on track by the combined talents of Ken Block and Andreas Bakkerud, and also boasts world-class back-up in the form of engineers from M-Sport, Ford Performance, as well as in-house support staff. All working around the clock to keep the drivers on point, and the wheels on the pair of 600bhp Ford Focus RSRX turning. Overseeing the whole operation is a huge task, and one not to be underestimated.
Enter Derek Dauncey. With a life long career in off-road racing behind him, including the running of Mitsubishi’s World Rally efforts during the Makkinen era of championship wins, there are few better qualified to take up the management reigns.
What’s more, Dauncey has been teamed up with Ken Block since the Head Hoonigan in Charge started rallying nearly a decade ago. At well over 6-feet tall, 51 year old Dauncey cuts an imposing figure in the service paddock, and we jumped at the chance to grab his thoughts on managing a team of over 30 race-personnel, this year’s championship, the dynamic between Ken and Andreas, and the team’s goals for 2017.