Irwindale Speedway will always be a formative part of Red Bull Global Rallycross history. The very first event we ever held took place there, four years ago today in fact, and it also played host to the very last X Games Los Angeles.
We've sent our best of the best to compete there—from World Rally champions, to Pikes Peak world record holders, to action sports superstars—in some of the finest production-based racecars in the world. Each time, the racing was incredible. Today, we'll take a look back at that first event, the genesis of who we are and what we've become in the years since. (Photo: Alex Wong)
The stars of the first Red Bull GRC event: Rhys Millen, Tanner Foust, and Marcus Gronholm. Fan accessibility has always been paramount at our events, and to this day, there are series-wide autograph sessions at every single one of our races. (Photo: Henry Z. DeKuyper/Import Tuner)
Two-time WRC champion Marcus Gronholm and Olsbergs MSE were the class of the field in that first race, sweeping both days of race action. To this day, OMSE is the only team to lead a driver to a Red Bull GRC Supercar title, and builds the spec cars used in GRC Lites. (Image via Jalopnik)
Gronholm's teammate, Tanner Foust, took podiums on both legs of the weekend as well. He would go on to claim the first two Supercar driver's titles with OMSE in 2011 and 2012 before moving to Volkswagen Andretti Rallycross last year, where he debuted the Beetle GRC in Los Angeles with a dominant heat victory. (Image via Autoblog)
Rhys Millen's Hyundai Velosters have been a part of Red Bull GRC from the beginning, with his two-car squad debuting at the first race in Irwindale. Millen took his first podium in Las Vegas in 2012, and earned two main event wins last year in Daytona and Los Angeles. Millen has been a trailblazing team owner during his tenure in the series, fielding its first female Supercar driver in Emma Gilmour and becoming the second Supercar team owner to expand into GRC Lites with Tyler Benson last year. (Image via Autoblog)
Just months removed from scoring his first WRC points, Ken Block was on hand as a spectator at Irwindale to check out the action. He would make his Red Bull GRC debut at X Games that July and has not missed a race since. Block, now the series' all-time leader in heat wins with 30, came within a single finishing position of winning last year's Supercar title. (Photo: Antonio Alvendia/MotorMavens)
Dave Mirra led Subaru Rally Team USA into its first Red Bull GRC event, coming up just shy of the podium in the main event on Sunday. For the past three years, Subaru has fielded multiple full-time entries in the Supercar class, with Sverre Isachsen giving the team its first victory in Seattle last September. (Photo: Lars Gange/Subaru Rally Team USA)
The first event saw its share of heart-stopping on-track moments. This spectacular accident saw Jimmy Keeney flip his Subaru multiple times, though he would walk away unscathed and returned in time for the series' next event in Snoqualmie, WA in April. (Photo: Henry Z. DeKuyper/Import Tuner)
The first rallycross podium in Red Bull GRC history: Marcus Gronholm, Tanner Foust, and Stephan Verdier. Gronholm and Foust are currently tied for the most wins in series history with five apiece, while Verdier has four podiums to his name. (Photo: Tram Tran/OMGDrift.com)
Two years later, we returned to Irwindale for one more show: the final X Games Los Angeles before the event moved to Austin. In front of a sold out crowd, Toomas Heikkinen grabbed the gold medal over Tanner Foust and Sverre Isachsen for the fourth win of his Red Bull GRC-record five-race win streak. (Photo: Matt Kalish/Red Bull GRC)
Do you have any memories of Red Bull GRC competing at Irwindale? Leave us photos in the comments below!