In the olden days, keeping up effectively with all of this weekend’s amazing motorsports action would’ve taken a passport or a job working the news wires. From two- and four-wheel racing on both coasts of the United States, to the world’s top rallying stars in South America, to the Formula 1 field competing in Azerbaijan for just the third time ever, you’d be hard-pressed to tell your friends that none of the racing that took place on Saturday or Sunday was of any interest to you.
So who were the most impressive racers of the past weekend? We’ve got some familiar faces on our latest list of top competitors, but some of this week’s winners may surprise you:
Monster Energy Supercross: Marvin Musquin
In a must-win situation, Musquin did exactly what he needed to do: he earned his second straight victory in Salt Lake City and closed the 450SX championship gap on points leader Jason Anderson. While he got a significant break thanks to Anderson’s first bad race of the season, enabling Musquin to cut down the advantage all the way down to 14 points, the French rider qualified second, won his first heat, and checked out on the way to his fourth victory of the season.
Formula Drift: Chris Forsberg
Three-time Formula Drift champion Forsberg finally returned his NOS Energy Drink Nissan to the top step of the podium for the first time since Long Beach in 2014 with a victory in Round 2: Scorched on Saturday. Taking down defending Orlando winner Fredric Aasbo in the semifinals, Forsberg stared down 2017 series champion James Deane and his Worthouse Drift Team S14 in the final, proving to last year’s dominant driver that one of the sport’s most experienced competitors was still a championship threat.
WRC: Ott Tänak
While Sebastien Ogier’s annual struggles at this event continued, Tänak led almost the entirety of YPF Rally Argentina to take his fourth career victory over his former M-Sport teammate. The Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT driver took the lead after the fifth stage and never looked back, losing only two stages between SS3 and SS14. Tänak and co-driver Martin Järveoja would win by 37.7 seconds over Thierry Neuville and Nicolas Gilsoul, who took last year’s Argentina victory for Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT.
NHRA: Steve Torrence
For the third time this season, and the third time in a row in four-wide events, Torrence came out on top of the Top Fuel class to further prove to the field that he’s going to be the man to beat for the title. Just three weeks removed from another four-wide win in Las Vegas, Torrence beat Doug Kalitta, Terry McMillen, and Clay Millican in the final; he got out of the gate first and held on as his 3.813-second, 326.56 mph pass left the rest of the field in his dust.
Formula 1: Sergio Perez
Lewis Hamilton earned his first win of the season and Fernando Alonso put on a masterclass to climb to seventh, but give some credit to Sahara Force India driver Perez for finally earning his first points finish of the season. If you’re going to miss the top 10 in the first three rounds of the year, then the best way to make up for it is with a podium; after taking supersoft tires in the final stage of the race, he took third place in Azerbaijan, his best finish since another third place at the same circuit two years ago.