ERC SATA Rallye Açores day three report: Kopeckı makes it three in the ERC
Jan Kopeckı continued his impressive start to the FIA European Rally Championship season by making it three wins out of four with his first gravel victory on SATA Rallye Açores today.
Driving a Michelin-shod ŠKODA Motorsport Fabia Super 2000 alongside navigator Pavel Dresler, Kopeckı made sure of his latest success by completing the event-closing Tronqueira stage, one of six produced for live broadcast by Eurosport Events, with his seventh-fastest stage time.
The result means that Kopeckı increases his lead of the ERC standings to 27 points heading to round five in Corsica next month and lays to rest the painful memories of 2010 when he crashed out of top spot five kilometres from the finish of the same Tronqueira stage.
Craig Breen extended his run of podiums to three events with a fine second place in a Peugeot Rally Academy 207 S2000 as local hero Ricardo Moura bagged the final podium place on his debut in a Fabia S2000 after a close scrap with fellow Portuguese Bruno Magalhães and Bernardo Sousa. Moura’s performance earned him the coveted Colin McRae ERC Flat Out Trophy.
In the ERC Production Car Cup there was a debut triumph for Alessandro Bruschetta in a Napoca Rally Academy Subaru Impreza R4 STI. Hannes Danzinger was on course for victory in the ERC 2WD Championship but an off three stages from home left his Renault Clio R3 with damaged suspension. Diogo Gago inherited the class lead only to stop two kilometres from the finish of Tronqueira, which left Zoltán Bessenyey to take the spoils for Eurosol-Honda Civic Type R.
“I’m very happy because my last gravel rally was two years ago and this is my first win on gravel so thanks to ŠKODA and to everyone in the team for doing a great job,” said Kopeckı. “I was not thinking about the corner where I crashed but when I passed that corner I said ‘okay, it’s over’ and then we went wide on the next corner so I thought it was better not to think about these things again. It’s been a good start to the season and now we need to prepare for Corsica.”
read more: fiaerc.com/news/662
Azores Photos: fiaerc.com/photogallery/Azores
Azores Videos: fiaerc.com/videogallery/Azores
Next Rnd 5 Corsica May 16-18
With a route covering large chunks of the Mediterranean island, the rally is now a proper ‘Tour of Corsica’ again having been contained around Ajaccio during the latter years of its WRC tenure. Known as the ‘Rally of 10,000 Corners’ due to its high frequency of turns.
Official Website: asacc.fr/