Jan KopeckÃ½'s Rallye Deutschland ended this morning when the Czech Rally Champion slid off the road into a tree near the end of the third stage. The Fabia WRC 05 suffered damage to the left rear and he was unable to continue. On the opening...
Jan Kopecký's Rallye Deutschland ended this morning when the Czech Rally Champion slid off the road into a tree near the end of the third stage.
The Fabia WRC 05 suffered damage to the left rear and he was unable to continue. On the opening stage of the day Jan had set eighth fastest time and was sixth on the next stage, moving into ninth place overall as a result.
The two other Skoda Motorsport World Rally Team drivers, Alex Bengue and Armin Schwarz both retired from the event, Alex after leaving the road at a tricky corner on the third stage and Armin with engine damage caused by his crash on SS8.
The World Rally Championship stays in Europe for round 12, Rally GB, where Colin McRae will return to the series for the first time in 18 months. The 1995 World Champion has a busy test schedule ahead of him as he acquaints himself with the Fabia WRC 05 ahead of his home event.
The news of McRae's return has prompted a massive increase in interest for the British round with the organisers reporting a 21% increase in ticket sales in the 10 days since Skoda Motorsport confirmed his entry.
Jan Kopecký: "The set up of the car was great today and I was feeling very confident. We were not pushing hard but were trying to drive our own rally. Perhaps I wasn't concentrating enough or I misunderstood Filip but I was too late on the brakes and we slid wide into a tree. It was my first mistake on this event but it was a costly one."
Martin Muehlmeier (Head of Skoda Motorsport): "Despite not finishing the rally we can draw positive conclusions that our car performed much closer to our expectations in Germany. The retirements were all caused by driver error rather than technical problems. Our team worked very hard to keep Armin in the rally after his accident but the engine damage was beyond our control. Jan drove exceptionally well but his accident was just one of the things can happen in rallying. We are looking forward very much to working with Colin McRae next month and it is exciting to see the level of interest in our new team."