Bosen, 25 August 2019 – Scoring their best result of the 2019 season, Jan Kopecký and co-driver Pavel Dresler (CZE/CZE) powered their ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo to WRC2 Pro victory at ADAC Rallye Deutschland (22/08/–25/08/2019), tenth round of the FIA World Rally Championship. Teammates Kalle Rovanperä/Jonne Halttunen (FIN/FIN) recovered from a setback on Saturday, when they slipped off the road, to third place in the category. Thus Rovanperä increased his lead in the WRC 2 Pro drivers’ overall standings. Since its homologation in April 2019, the new ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo remains undefeated in its category of the FIA World Rally Championship 2019. Again the Czech rally car also was dominant in the WRC 2 category for private teams. Both driving the ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo for the very first time, German crews Fabian Kreim/Tobias Braun and Marijan Griebel/Pirmin Winklhofer secured a double victory.
After Saturday’s stages on the gruelling military area of Baumholder, the final leg of the ADAC Rallye Deutschland, tenth round of the FIA World Rally Championship, lead the teams back to the lovely Mosel vineyards. Four stages on a sunny Sunday morning had to be mastered. The 28.06 kilometres of "Grafschaft" were an early wakeup for the crews.
The challenge for the two ŠKODA works crews was clear: Recently crowned Czech Rally Champions Jan Kopecký and Pavel Dresler had to defend their lead in the WRC 2 Pro category. Also driving a ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo, Kalle Rovanperä and Jonne Halttunen, who had been in the category lead until a small off-road excursion on Saturday morning, had to secure their third category position and valuable championship points.
On the opening stage of the day, Kopecký started cautious but could nevertheless extend his category lead. "The stage was hard – there was a lot of gravel on the road and some muddy parts in the forest. So I really had to be careful," he said. His young teammate Rovanperä added: "In the morning, it was quite slippery on hard tyres. I was cautious, but it was good." Having said that, he emerged as the quickest driver of the category.
Eventually, Jan Kopecký and Pavel Dresler defended their lead until the finish and conquered their first WRC 2 Pro category win of the FIA World Rally Championship 2019. Kalle Rovanperä and Jonne Halttunen took no risks with their ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo. With a third place in the WRC 2 Pro category they secured valuable championship points in both drivers’ and manufacturers’ overall standings.
In the WRC 2 category for private teams, Fabian Kreim (German champion 2016 and 2017) and reigning German champion Marijan Griebel, both being supported by ŠKODA Auto Deutschland, secured a double victory on their first event with the new ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo.
ŠKODA Motorsport boss Michal Hrabánek was delighted at the podium near Lake Bostal: "Congratulations to Jan and Pavel for bringing home this victory thanks to a great performance. We are proud, that our new ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo remains undefeated in its category in the FIA World Rally Championship. This is a big reward for the great work the whole team has done. After their mishap, Kalle and Jonne made the most of the situation by finishing third in the WRC 2 Pro category and collecting valuable championship points!"
Final Result ADAC Rallye Deutschland (WRC 2 Pro/WRC 2)
1. Kopecký/Dresler (CZE/CZE), ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo, 3:27:24.1 h*
2. Kreim/Braun (GER/GER), ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo, +52,6 sec.
3. Griebel/Winklhofer (GER/GER), ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo, +1:11.1 min.
4. Kajetanowicz/Szcepaniak (POL/POL), VW Polo GTI R5, +1:14.1 min.
5. Camilli/Veillas (FRA/FRA), Ford Fiesta R5 MKII, +1:19.1 min.*
6. Rovanperä/Halttunen (FIN/FIN), ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo, +2:54.0 min*
7. Østberg/Eriksen (NOR/NOR), Citroën C3 R5, +3:36.5 min*
*Factory nominated crews eligible to score points in the WRC 2 Pro category
Championship Standings WRC 2 Pro/Drivers (after 10 of 14 rounds)
1. Kalle Rovanperä (FIN), ŠKODA, 151 points
2. Mads Østberg (NOR), Citroën, 110 points
3. Gus Greensmith (GBR), Ford, 85 points
4. Lukasz Pieniazek (POL), Ford, 74 points
5. Jan Kopecký (CZE), ŠKODA, 61 points
Championship Standings WRC 2 Pro/Manufacturers (after 10 of 14 rounds)
1. ŠKODA, 224 points
2. Ford, 195 points
3. Citroën, 110 points
Number of the day 4
Since its debut at Rally Portugal, the new ŠKODA FABIA R5 evo remains undefeated in its category, scoring the fourth category victory in a row in the FIA World Rally Championship 2019.
The calendar of the 2019 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC 2 Pro)
Great Britain 03/10/–06/10/2019
ŠKODA Motorsport Overview
2018 was the most successful year in the history of ŠKODA Motorsport so far. Jan Kopecký/Pavel Dresler (CZE/CZE) became WRC 2 champions and managed to win the Czech Rally Championship (MČR) for the fourth consecutive time. 2017 WRC 2 winners Pontus Tidemand/Jonas Andersson finished second overall, and youngsters Kalle Rovanperä/ Jonne Halttunen (FIN/FIN) completed a pure ŠKODA podium in the final standings of the 2018 FIA World Rally Championship’s WRC 2 category. For the fourth time in a row ŠKODA Motorsport won the WRC 2 Championship for Teams.
The success story of the Czech brand took place worldwide. The private ŠKODA driver Yuya Sumiyama and navigator Takahiro Yasui from Japan won the 2018 FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship (APRC), Manvir Singh Baryan/Drew Sturrock (KEN/GBR) took the title win in the FIA African Rally Championship (ARC). After winning the FIA South American Rally Championship (CODASUR) in 2013, 2016 and 2017, ŠKODA crew Gustavo Saba/Fernando Mussano (PRY/ARG) again were successful. On top of that, ŠKODA crews won 17 national championships.
The ŠKODA FABIA R5, a high-tech 4x4, was homologated by the International Automobile Federation FIA on 1 April 2015. ŠKODA’s new FABIA R5 is successfully continuing the long tradition of ŠKODA Motorsport. Its predecessor, the FABIA SUPER 2000, won 50 national and international titles around the world.
ŠKODA has been successful on the motorsport scene since 1901. Be it on the circuit or in rallies, ŠKODA has celebrated victories and won titles all around the world. Historical highlights include winning the title in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC 2) for the first time in 2016, numerous title wins in the FIA European Rally Championship (ERC), the FIA Asia-Pacific Rally Championship (APRC) and the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC), as well as the victory in the European Touring Car Championship in 1981. ŠKODA teams have also triumphed in the world’s oldest and most famous rally, taking several class victories in the legendary Monte Carlo, which was first held in 1911.