Global Rally Cross kicked off its inaugural even yesterday at Irwindale Speedway. Drivers raced in bracket-style competition on a mixture of dirt and gravel stages. Competitors each ran events in two and four-wheel-drive cars.

Marcus Gronholm sealed victory at the wheel of a 550-horsepower Ford Fiesta in the all-wheel-drive round, beating out Swedish star Michael Jernberg in second and Formula Drift superstar (and U.S. Top Gear host) Tanner Faust in third.

Gronholm's victory shouldn't come as a surprise to anyone who watched him drive WRC cars in the early 2000s. For his part, Gronholm wasn't too shocked either, and attributed his victory in part to experience with motocross. Check out video of the event after the jump.

[Source: Rally Buzz via Jalopnik]