Jan Kopecky WINS - Sata Rallye Acores | ERC - 2013, Round 4

After an eventful opening two days at Sata Rallye, Acores, things changed for good with better weather. The fight for the top position were mostly even, with Jan Kopecky in the lead and eventually taking the rally win at the end of SS19.

"It's good and I am very happy, I have not done many gravel rally, this is my first win on the gravel. It was great, we are really happy. I was very close in 2010 and we crash, so I am very happy to win. We need one more (win) and that is the first half...", said excited Jan Kopecky, happy with his win.

Not so lucky, the former F1 driver Robert Kubica finished the rally in overall 6th place. He quoted at the end of SS19, "It has been difficult weekend for us, especially for today, some stages we did not have any pace notes becasue of the fog. We have been lucky and unlucky this weekend, but it has been a good experience."

Plenty more bits of info, all here along with the complete results.

POS    NO     DRIVER
CO-DRIVER
ENTRANT
CAR
   CLASS      TOTAL
TIME
[PEN]             
DIFF
1ST
PREV
11Jan KOPECKY (CZE)
Pavel DRESLER (CZE)
SKODA MOTORSPORT
SKODA FABIA S2000

22:26:32.2   -:-
-:-
22Craig BREEN (IRL)
Paul NAGLE (IRL)
PEUGEOT RALLY ACADEMY
PEUGEOT 207 S2000

22:27:04.4+32.2
+32.2
36Ricardo MOURA (PRT)
Sancho EIRÓ (PRT)
SKODA FABIA S2000
22:27:31.0+58.8
+26.6
48
Bruno MAGALHÃES (PRT)  
Nuno DA SILVA (PRT)
PEUGEOT 207 S2000


22:29:09.8+2:37.6
+1:38.8
59Jérémi ANCIAN (FRA)
Gilles DE TURCKHEIM (FRA)        
PEUGEOT RALLY ACADEMY      

PEUGEOT 207 S2000

22:29:59.6+3:27.4
+49.8

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High Drama Prevails @ Sata Rallye Acores, ERC - 2013 | Jan Kopecky is the New Leader !


After the thunderstorm filled action yesterday, the stages were much better for driving today, although high drama still lurking around the competition.

Overnight leader Robert Kubica lost his top place to Jan Kopecky after SS7, only to roll out on SS11 and even lucky enough to reach service with SS12 cancelled to similar reasons as y'day.

Kubica, who was leading SATA Rallye Açores only to be forced to slow in heavy fog on stage eight, was battling back into contention when he rolled his Citroën DS3 RRC on the Feteiras stage, which was being streamed live on the official ERC website, www.fiaerc.com.

He explains: “We went to a right-hander and I lost the car. The road was very narrow so we clipped a bank. We nearly managed to get it back but the bank was bigger and thicker and unfortunately it pulled us on the side and we rolled. At the end of the stage we managed to fix a bit the wheel and we managed to come back. The roll cage is okay from our point of view. It has been difficult, difficult day starting last stage of first loop when we had a lot of fog. If we manage to get the car sorted out then after that we will see if we carry on.

It was not an issue of visibility, the conditions are very difficult and very difficult for everybody. I was surprised how the car reacted. I was not expecting it. I was not pushing because we had bad luck with the fog at the end of the last stage of the first loop. Even driving at normal speed there was very poor grip in the corner and we lost the car. It was a result of a mistake. When you see the car like this you don’t enjoy it.

Kubica’s damaged car is currently being repaired in service in Ponta Delgada. The event restarts on Sunday morning with the 20.82 km of Graminhais stage

Day's top 5 result displayed below, complete results here.
POS   NO   DRIVER
CO-DRIVER
ENTRANT
CAR
   CLASS   TOTAL
TIME
[PEN]
DIFF
1ST
PREV
11Jan KOPECKY (CZE)
Pavel DRESLER (CZE)
SKODA MOTORSPORT
SKODA FABIA S2000

21:05:11.9   -:-
-:-
22Craig BREEN (IRL)
Paul NAGLE (IRL)
PEUGEOT RALLY ACADEMY
PEUGEOT 207 S2000

21:05:25.0+13.1
+13.1
38Bruno MAGALHÃES (PRT)  
Nuno DA SILVA (PRT)

PEUGEOT 207 S2000

21:05:45.8+33.9
+20.8
46Ricardo MOURA (PRT)
Sancho EIRÓ (PRT)

SKODA FABIA S2000

21:05:47.4+35.5
+1.6
510Bernardo SOUSA (PRT)
Hugo MAGALHÃES (PRT)

FORD FIESTA RRC

21:05:48.0+36.1
+0.6
Read more ...

Robert Kubica on top at end of Leg 1 - Sata Rallye Acores | Rally Cut-Short due to Overnight Heavy Rains

Andre Lavadinho World Photography
Overnight heavy downpour has claimed a few stages resulting in drastic changes to the rally itinerary. SS1 - Coroa da Mata 1 was eventually cancelled and SS2 - São Brás/Vila Franca 1 - was shortened from 16.38 km to 6.14 km.

Revised stage length of the first  leg is now less than 10 % of the total distance for the day, Thursday's stages will hold good for Friday's route as well. The event's stage stewards confirmed that the legs one and two will be merged. This resulted the start order selected by the priority drivers on the opening day to be held good for day 2.

Jean-Michel Raoux started first today, and will run first on the road tomorrow in his Peugeot 207 following qualifying for the event, where the former F1 driver Robert Kubica went fastest. He had selected last position, behind Craig Breen and Jan Kopecky although he was undecided over the order, initially.
I would prefer to be further back because now I don't know which position is the best to choose,” admitted the F1 star being almost four seconds quicker than the lot through the qualifying stage.

I have no experience and with so much surface changes on the stages it's very difficult to know what is the best. Without being here before you don't know how the roads are developing and whether the grip level is damp or wet or getting worse. Some places will get better, some places will get worse.

It was disppointing for Bryan Bouffier who was forced to withdraw followed by a blown engine during pre-event testing. “I regret to announce that I will not be at the start of the rally,” he said. “The engine broke during testing and a spare was not available.” Bouffier had been amongst the pre-event favourites for success in his Peugeot 207 S2000.

Here is the top 5 results of the event, more at the official page here.
  POS NO  DRIVER
CO-DRIVER
ENTRANT
CAR
CLASS  TOTAL
TIME
[+PEN]     
 DIFF
 1ST
 PREV
 1 4Robert KUBICA (POL)
Maciek BARAN (POL)

CITROEN DS3 RRC

211:13.5-:-
-:-
 2 1Jan KOPECKY (CZE)
Pavel DRESLER (CZE)
SKODA MOTORSPORT
SKODA FABIA S2000

211:23.2+9.7
+9.7
 3 6Ricardo MOURA (PRT)
Sancho EIRÓ (PRT)

SKODA FABIA S2000

211:24.0+10.5
+0.8
 4 2Craig BREEN (IRL)
Paul NAGLE (IRL)
PEUGEOT RALLY Academy 
PEUGEOT 207 S2000

211:25.2+11.7
+1.2
 5         10      Bernardo SOUSA (PRT)
Hugo MAGALHÃES (PRT)    

FORD FIESTA RRC

211:27.1+13.6
+1.9
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SATA Rallye Açores - 2013 | European Rally Championship - Round 4

Coming weekend is all set to stage the Sata Rallye Acores, the fourth rally of the ERC calendar. The rally will be officially opened in a few hours from now. With celebrities and young stars like Robert Kubica, Jan Kopecky, Craig Breen, [and more] in the entry list, the weekend is going to be packed with full of exciting stage action. For sure!!

Rally will be hosted at the picturesque city of Lagoa municipality on the southwest-central part of São Miguel Island, in the middle of the Atlantic Ocean. Rally HQ was established this Monday, with the recce spread for 2 days, ie., yesterday and today. The documentation will be established and concluded in a few moments from now, along with the pre-event scrutineering.

Ceremonial start and city show is scheduled for today, and the real gravel action begins tomorrow, 25th Thursday with a free practice and shakedown in the morning. The competitive stage action starts post lunch and with a service to do with four stages for the day. On Friday, 8 stages with a mid day service will end with a night halt. Remaining 7 stages will be on Saturday, again with a mid day service to conclude the rally.

Below are the videos of the event promo and tests done by the Skoda Motorsport and Robert Kubica. Australian Molly Taylor too will be debuting her 2013 rally here as well. Stay tuned with us, for more updates!!

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