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High jumps, hard tracks: ŠKODA eager to continue run of success on Sardinia.


› ŠKODA duos Jan Kopecký/Pavel Dresler and Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm in action at the Rally Italy in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC 2)
› Three podium positions in two starts by ŠKODA Motorsport with the FABIA R5 in the WRC 2 in 2016 to date
› Michal Hrabánek: «Maximum performance is required from the team»

9 June, 2016

Mladá Boleslav, 9 June 2016 – High jumps, hard tracks: ŠKODA Motorsport are eager to continue their run of success at the Rally Italy on Sardinia (9 to 12 June). The works team will be represented by the experienced duos Jan Kopecký/Pavel Dresler (CZ/CZ) and Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm (FIN/FIN) at the third appearance in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC 2) in 2016. Kopecký has already picked up two wins in two starts in the Czech Rally Championship (MČR). And at the World Championship event in Portugal two weeks ago, the third works team with Pontus Tidemand/Jonas Andersson (S/S) triumphed with the ŠKODA FABIA R5 in the WRC 2 category.

«The Rally Italy is one of the most difficult challenges on the World Rally Championship calendar,» said ŠKODA Motorsport Director Michal Hrabánek. “Maximum performance is required from the team.» Almost 325 kilometres over 19 stages are scheduled from Thursday to Sunday. The highlight is the legendary «Micky’s Jump». It isn’t the longest, but it is the highest jump that the rally cars have to master in the entire World Championship season. The mostly rock-hard surface also makes the tracks on the Mediterranean island a tough test for the cars.
«Our driver duos also need to be fully focussed every second that they are on the narrow gravel tracks on Sardinia. Every mistake is punished,» warned Hrabánek. Jan Kopecký made it onto the WRC 2 podium in third place on Sardinia last year. The 34-year-old is eager to build on this performance at this year’s edition. «After my win at the Rally Český Krumlov, I need to adapt from the asphalt tracks in my home country to the gravel surface on Sardinia as quickly as possible. Last year showed that it takes strong nerves and controlled risks here,» said Kopecký.

Esapekka Lappi lost more than half an hour at the endurance test on Sardinia last year after a coming together with a stone, but won seven special stages to fight his way back up into ninth place. «The motto is: Drive quickly and don’t make any mistakes. Our aim is definitely to be battling for the win,» said Lappi. The «flying» Finn, like Jan Kopecký, will make his second appearance of the year in the WRC 2. On his first outing at the Rally Sweden, Lappi finished in third place behind his team-mate Pontus Tidemand.

Then came three wins in a row in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC 2) for the ŠKODA FABIA R5. In the speedy, reliable four-wheel drive from Mladá Boleslav, the Finn Teemu Suninen was victorious at the Rally Mexico, while Nicolás Fuchs from Peru was unbeatable at the Rally Argentina. The works team didn’t contest either of the two rounds overseas, but clinched the hat-trick of wins for the ŠKODA FABIA R5 at the Rally Portugal with Pontus Tidemand. The next chapter of the success story is set to be added on Sardinia.

FIA World Rally Championship (WRC 2)
Event/ Date
Rally Monte Carlo; 21.01.–24.01.2016
Rally Sweden; 11.02.–14.02.2016
Rally Mexico; 03.03.–06.03.2016
Rally Argentina; 21.04.–24.04.2016
Rally Portugal; 19.05.–22.05.2016
Rally Italy; 09.06.–12.06.2016
Rally Poland; 01.07.–03.07.2016
Rally Finland; 28.07.–31.07.2016
Rally Germany; 18.08.–21.08.2016
Rally China; 08.09.–11.09.2016
Rally Corsica; 29.09.–02.10.2016
Rally Spain; 13.10.–16.10.2016
Rally Great Britain; 27.10.–30.10.2016
Rally Australia; 17.11.–20.11.2016

Did you know that …

… there are a total of eight ŠKODA FABIA R5 on the entry list of the WRC 2 category for the Rally Italy on Sardinia? In addition to the two works drivers Jan Kopecký and Esapekka Lappi, the ŠKODA customers Teemu Suninen, Nicolás Fuchs, Armin Kremer (D), Julien Maurin (F), as well as the Italians Umberto Scandola and Luca Hoelbling rely on ŠKODA’S powerful machine.

… ŠKODA is also a major player in the overall standings of the WRC 2 after five of the 14 rounds of the season? Behind the leading Brit Elfyn Evans (62 points), Nicolás Fuchs (55), works driver Pontus Tidemand (S/43), Hubert Ptaszek (PL/42), Armin Kremer (28) and Teemu Suninen (25) make it five drivers in the following positions who picked up their points in the FABIA R5. Works driver Esapekka Lappi is in eleventh place with 15 points – but he has only contested one rally so far. Each driver can pick up points for the WRC 2 overall standings in seven selected rallies during the course of the year.

… ŠKODA Motorsport is already in second place in the WRC 2 team standings? Even though the team has only contested two WRC rallies to date, they have already picked up 43 points. Only M-Sport with 73 points from four rallies is currently better.

… the rally will get underway with a new highlight on Thursday evening this time? The 2.00-kilometre special stage Ittiri Arena Show in Alghero replaces last year’s opening stage in Cagliari. Also new: The special stages Tula on Friday and Sassari – Argentiera on Sunday.

… the absolute highlight is without a doubt the legendary «Micky’s Jump»? This will have to be mastered on the special stage Monte Lerno – at 44.26 kilometres the longest stage of the rally – which will be completed twice on Saturday. The rally cars fly up to 40 metres through the air on «Micky’s Jump».

… the reigning World Rally Champion and current WRC front-runner Sébastien Ogier (F) made rally history in a ŠKODA here in 2012? He finished in fifth place overall in the FABIA SUPER 2000 on Sardinia, which no other driver has managed in an S2000-class car to date. However, even more impressive was the stage «Tergu-Osilo 1», on which the Frenchman achieved something historic: He got the best time – leaving all of the World Rally Car elite in his wake. In 2012, Volkswagen used the ŠKODA FABIA SUPER 2000 to prepare for entering the FIA World Rally Championship. Where Volkswagen have been the measure of all things since entering the competition: The team picked up the titles in the drivers’, co-drivers’ and manufacturers’ standings of the WRC in 2013, 2014 and 2015. And Volkswagen leads all of the WRC standings again this year.

… the Rally Italy has only been held on Sardinia since 2004? Before that, Italy’s WRC event had been held around Sanremo since the world championship was introduced in 1973. The Rally Italy’s service park on Sardinia is located on the west coast of the island, in Alghero, for the third year in a row.

… ŠKODA has already won the «Rally Italia Sardegna» once? The Finn Juho Hänninen won in the Fabia Super 2000 in 2010. Back then, the rally was part of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) as a one-off. Hänninen won the title at the end of the season, ahead of his fellow ŠKODA driver Jan Kopecký.

… Sardinia is the second largest island in the Mediterranean after Sicily? Almost 1.7 million people live in an area of 24,000 square kilometres. The north of Sardinia is 202 kilometres away from mainland Italy – while the south of the island is just 184 kilometres away from Tunisia. The capital is Cagliari.












David Haidinger
Communications ŠKODA Motorsport

Media Skoda Motorsport

Photos:Tomáš Brčko Brázdil by Rally Report Magazine Argentina and Skoda Motorsport /čko/197904406893156 /


Media Andrea Privarova
Rally Report Magazine Argentina

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Rally Report Magazine 16 Años




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15 de Octubre 2016

La ilusión del cántabro Dani Sordo, del día de hoy, era mantener la lígera diferencia que cosechó ayer en la etapa de ripio mojado con algunos sectores con barro tripulando su efectivo Hyundai i20 WRC New Generation.

Pero hoy nada fue sencillo para el español, en primera instancia con problemas de subviraje en su unidad coreana armada en la factoría alemana de Alzenau, que le hicieron perder al término de la jornada valiosos segundos. Sin embargo, hay que decir, que el galo Sébastien Ogier realizó una remontada de aquellas, estableciendo cronos al más no poder, con un ataque frénetico sobre el piloto local de Hyundai, demostrando porque es el conductor de la especialidad del momento con casi cuatro coronas consecutivas en su haber, pilotando de forma perfecta el Polo R WRC junto a su amigo e inseparable navegante Julien Ingrassia. Descontando los 17 segundos que había de distancia entre ambos al finalizar el día inicial de tierra y ahora aventajando por 5.8 segundos contra la motivación intacta que origina Sordo, en el Rally de su casa, frente a su público y ante la gran oportunidad de cortar la racha negativa de no poder ganar en Cataluña.

En tercer escalón y en discordia se ubicó el belga Thierry Neuville, con el otro i20 WRC oficial de última evolución, con tiempos aceptables, pero lejos de Ogier y Sordo, y favoreciéndose, tras al abandono sorpresivo por vuelco del noruego Andreas Mikkelsen en la prueba especial 12, cuándo ocupaba la tercera plaza y tenía opciones de podio. Sin poder implementar su gran actuación del 2015, el rubio de Noruega, se va con las manos vacías de Salou.

En tanto que el fines Jari-Matti Latvala ha tenido un Rally para el olvido con el Polo R WRC número 2, con muchos inconvenientes, tanto en errores de conducción, con trompos, etc y pérdida de tiempo relevante en los varios pinchazos que lo consumió, quedando entre los 20 mejores clasificados al culminar este día sábado en PortAventura.

El “Kiwi” Hayden Paddon se recompuso de la mala puesta a punto del viernes y sostuvo un plan de trabajo constante a bordo de su i20 WRC, optando por la interesante cuarta posición, teniendo al británico Kris Meeke de la DS3 WRC by Abu Dhabi y al noruego Mads Ostberg de M-Sport entre el quinto y sexto puesto respectivamente, a sus espaldas, del talento de Nueva Zelanda, que se anima a decir, que sueña con el podio en suelo catalán.

Mientras que en la WRC2, las cosas están muy claras, solo una escuadra que domina a voluntad, los checos de ŠKODA, con sus dos estrellas que manejaron formidablemente sus Fabia R5, el experimentado Jan Kopecký y el sueco Pontus Tidemand. Que desde mañana buscarán el 1-2 fantástico para la marca que gestiona Michal Hräbanek y Pavel Hortek, desde su cuartel general ligado a Praga en Mladá Bolesvav.

Para finalizar dos cosas, los constructores M-Sport de Ford y Volkswagen Motorsport han confirmado que mostrarán próximamente a la prensa especializada a mediados del mes de diciembre sus nuevos autos de cara al revolucionario WRC 2017. Los esperados nuevos Fiesta RS WRC y VW Polo R WRC con las innovaciones aligeradas de las especificaciones que propone la FIA bajo la regulación WRCar 017 desde Montecarlo, la apertura central del Mundial en el año próximo.

54 – RallyRACC-Cataluña-Costa Daurada WRC 2016

Clasificación General Día 2

1-Ogier-Ingrassia-VW Polo R WRC – 2h.35m.12s.8/10 99.813 km/h.
2-Sordo-Marti-Hyundai i20 WRC New Generation -a 5s.8/10
3-Neuvile-Gilsoul-Hyundai i20 WRC New Generation -a 1m.03s9/10.
4-Paddon-Kennard-Hyundai i20 WRC New Generation -a 1m.20s.
5-Meeke-Nagle-DS3 WRC -a 1m.57s.9/10
6-Ostberg-Floene-Ford Fiesta RS WRC -a 2m.35s.7/10
7-Tanak-Molder-Ford Fiesta RS WRC -a 4m.24s.7/10

1-Kopecky-Dresler-ŠKODA Fabia 2h.42m.54s.4/10 95.138 km/h.
2-Tidemand-Andersson-ŠKODA Fabia-a 14s.3/10

All The Best, Pablito, Pablo MACHI WRC














Rally Report Magazine Argentina

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André Lavadinho / @World

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Rally Report Magazine 16 Años




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Rally de Córcega Día 1

Dani Sordo pierde opciones de podio en Córcega.

Cuando ocupaba la tercera posición provisional del Rally Tour de Corse, Dani Sordo se ha visto retrasado debido a un pinchazo en la última especial disputada hoy.

Sordo se ha visto apeado de la lucha por el podio por el que peleaba igual que en el pasado Rally de Alemania, y afrontará la segunda etapa de la prueba corsa en novena posición con el objetivo de llegar con el mayor número de puntos posibles el domingo a Porte-Vecchio, donde finalizará la presente edición del Rally Tour de Corse, décima prueba puntuable para el Campeonato del Mundo de Rallyes.

Dani empezaba la jornada acusando algo de subviraje en su Hyundai i20 WRC, a pesar de lo que marcaba el tercer mejor tiempo en la primera especial del día, Acqua Doria-Albitreccia, de 49,72 kilómetros. El piloto español del Hyundai Shell World Rally Team se iba encontrando más a gusto a medida que transcurría la etapa, pero pinchaba una de las ruedas traseras a pocos kilómetros del comienzo del último tramo cronometrado disputado hoy, perdiendo aproximadamente dos minutos: “Después de los tramos de la mañana me encontraba más a gusto con el coche, y he conservado los neumáticos en el primer tramo de la tarde de cara al último, pero he notado que el coche se movía de la parte trasera hasta que hemos comprobado que se trataba de un pinchazo y hemos tenido que parar a cambiar la rueda en pleno tramo. Ha sido decepcionante. No sé cómo ha ocurrido. Una pena, ya que nos encontrábamos en una buena tercera plaza. Intentaremos ganar alguna posición de aquí al domingo”, explicaba Sordo tras finalizar el último tramo disputado hoy.

Con salida y llegada desde Bastia, al norte de la isla, la jornada de mañana sábado será la más larga del Rally Tour de Corse y estará compuesta de dos bucles a los tramos La Porta-Valle di Rostino (53,72 kilómetros) y Novella-Pietralba (30,80 kilómetros).












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Rally Report Magazine 16 Años




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Home, speed home –
Ogier in a league of his own on day one of the Rally France.

Sébastien Ogier (F), Julien Ingrassia (F) Volkswagen Polo R WRC (2016) WRC Rally France - Corsica 2016 Photo: Bodo Kräling

Four stages, four fastest times – Ogier/Ingrassia open commanding lead on home soil
Latvala/Anttila and Mikkelsen/Jæger within touching distance of the podium in third and fourth

30th September 2016


Wolfsburg (30 September 2016). It doesn’t get any better than this. Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F) made a perfect start to the Rally France on Corsica in their Polo R WRC. The three-time world champions, who could claim the title for the fourth time in a row with victory at their home race – provided other results go their way – won all four special stages on the opening day of round ten of this season’s FIA World Rally Championship (WRC). Two of the duos out to prevent the Frenchmen from getting their hands on the title this weekend are their Volkswagen team-mates, who are also on course for success: Jari-Matti Latvala/Mikka Anttila (FIN/FIN) ended day one in third place, just ahead of Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jæger (N/N) in fourth. Second place after 157.68 of 390.92 kilometres against the clock is occupied by Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (B/B, Hyundai). While Ogier/Ingrassia opened a commanding lead of 44 seconds, just 15 seconds separate the chasing pack of three in their battle for second and third.

The opening day featured some typical Corsican special stages: narrow, winding roads and long sections put driver, co-driver and car through their paces in gorgeous autumn weather.

Quotes after day one of the Rally France

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“An ideal opening day for Julien and me – beautiful stages, superb weather and a perfect car. The key to stage one was to find our rhythm. Looking at the lead we opened, we appear to have done just that. It was pretty hot in the cockpit in the afternoon, particularly on the long 50-kilometre stage. We have a similarly demanding day ahead of us tomorrow, particularly if the weather deteriorates. However, we obviously want to continue as we were today, to make sure we win in the end. That is definitely the goal at our home rally.”

Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“We were a little too cautious at first, but gradually found our rhythm the further into the rally we got. We can make a few improvements here and there, for example when braking, but apart from that we are racing the right way for the Rally Corsica. That only makes the outstanding times set by our team-mate Sébastien Ogier all the more astonishing. Hats off to his performance. We will obviously try to stick with him tomorrow and on Sunday. If we can, we have a good chance of finishing on the podium.”

Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“We are not so much focusing on winning the world championship, but more on securing second place. With that in mind, we are going nicely in fourth place. I struggled to know how hard to brake in the morning. Unfortunately, we lost a lot of time as a result. Apart from that, though, it was a good day for us, but we have two more challenging days ahead to come.”

Sven Smeets, Volkswagen Motorsport Director
“We could hardly hope for a better start to the Rally France. Sébastien Ogier was clearly in a league of his own, while Jari-Matti Latvala and Andreas Mikkelsen are also well-placed. First, third and fourth is more than we had expected and hoped for. However, everyone in the team is well aware that we are only one third of the way into the rally and we still have a lot of work ahead of us. If we remain as focused as we have been so far, there is a good chance we will be rewarded with a strong result.”

And then there was …

… a little milestone. Andreas Mikkelsen is contesting his 75th rally in the World Rally Championship at the Rally France – the 45th with Volkswagen and the tenth with his co-driver Anders Jæger. The Norwegian made his debut at the 2006 Rally Great Britain. Since then, he has finished on the podium on 18 occasions, including victories at the 2015 Rally Spain and the 2016 Rally Poland – all with the Polo R WRC.

Standings after day two of the Rally France

01. Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F), Volkswagen, 1h 37m 52.8s
02. Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (B/B), Hyundai, + 44.0s
03. Jari-Matti Latala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN), Volkswagen + 58.0s
04. Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jæger (N/N), Volkswagen, + 59.3s
05. Craig Breen/Scott Martin (GB/GB), Citroën, + 1m 18.7s
06. Hayden Paddon/John Kennard (NZ/NZ), Hyundai, + 1m 26.2s
07. Eric Camilli/Benjamin Veillas (F/F), Ford, + 2m 00.7s
08. Elfyn Evans/Craig Perry (GB/GB), Ford, + 2m 36.3s
09. Dani Sordo/Marc Martí (E/E), Hyundai, + 2m 39.1s
10. Mads Østberg/Ola Fløene (N/N), Ford, + 2m 41.9s










André Dietzel
Media Volkswagen Motorsport

Admin and Translation:

Media & Comunication Top Run Motorsport

Rally Report Magazine Argentina

Photos: Hélena El Mokni / Daniel Roeseler / Kräling / Red Bull by Volkswagen Motorsport

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