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Rally Zlin (Czech) - 31 Aug-2 Sep 12

Posted: November 23, 2016 7:07 AM - 5444 Hits

Round 9 - 2012 Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC)
Round 8 - 2012 European Rally Championship

Mikkelsen eighth on sombre Barum Czech Rally Zlin

Posted: November 23, 2016 7:07 AM

Andreas Mikkelsen finished 8th on the Barum Czech Rally Zlin in his factory-prepared SKODA UK Motorsport Fabia S2000 to maintain his lead in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge.

Juho Hanninen (SKODA Motorsport) won the event as the first six places were filled with SKODA Fabia S2000s, although the podium celebrations and final stage (SS15) were cancelled as a mark of respect following an accident on SS13 that claimed the life of a spectator. SKODA UK Motorsport would like to extend its condolences to all those involved in the tragic accident.

Changeable weather during Leg 1 made tyre choice exceptionally difficult, and Andreas lost 14.4 seconds on Friday night's opening superspecial stage around Zlin city centre when rain offered little grip to his slick tyres.

Saturday's constantly changing weather continued to make tyre choice a lottery, although Andreas was one of the best to master the slippery conditions as he and co-driver Ola Floene took the lead after setting fastest times on SS4.

The SKODA UK Motorsport Fabia S2000's technical set-up was perfect for the twisty narrow asphalt roads. However, the Tesak stage had a slippery section with very long and fast corners, which didn't suit the set-up so well, meaning that Andreas dropped 33.4 seconds to leader Hanninen over its two runs (SS7/9).

Andreas started Sunday's second and final leg in 3rd place, but lost almost five minutes on the day's opening stage when he clipped a kerb at a left hand corner and had to stop twice to replace punctured front and rear right tyres.

Having dropped to 10th, Andreas had worked his way up to 8th before the rally was stopped one stage before scheduled.

"It's been a difficult weekend with a lot of difficult tyre choices, which I don't think anyone has got right all of the time. I went in a new direction with my set-up before the rally, and maybe that wasn't the way to go because the car felt better on Leg 2 when we changed it back. I struggled a little in the wet, but in the dry I felt more confident and I was a lot more competitive. A lot of the time I was happy with my performance. The team did a fantastic job, the Fabia S2000 was perfect and we scored what may prove to be some very important points."


Posted: November 23, 2016 7:05 AM

1. Juho Hanninen/Mikko Markkula (SKODA Fabia S2000) 2hrs 11mins 28.2secs
2. Roman Kresta/Petr Gross (SKODA Fabia S2000) +1min 43.1secs
3. Tomas Kostka/Miroslav Houst (SKODA Fabia S2000) 1min +51.8secs
4. Jaromir Tarabus/Daniel Trunkat (SKODA Fabia S2000) +4mins 11.7secs
5. Robert Barrable/Stuart Loudon (SKODA Fabia S2000) +4mins 33.6secs
6. Karl Kruuda/Martin Jarveoja (SKODA Fabia S2000) +5mins 03.0secs
7. Andreas Aigner/Ilka Minor (Subaru Impreza) +5mins 34.6secs
8. Andreas Mikkelsen/Ola Floene (SKODA Fabia S2000) +5mins 36.8secs
9. Michal Solowow/Maciej Baran (Peugeot 207 S2000) +6mins 18.7secs
10. Sepp Wiegand/Timo Gottschalk (SKODA Fabia S2000) +7mins 21.8secs


Posted: August 30, 2012 10:00 AM

Age: 24 Lives: County Dublin, Ireland

Irish ace on his hopes for Zlín and his event preparations

How have your preparations gone for the rally?
“We didn’t do a test because the engine for our ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000 was still being rebuilt. But we did International Rally Northern Ireland and we have shakedown on Friday to get back into it. We also did Rally Bohemia [in Czech Republic] during the summer. Although that was cancelled quite early it was still good practice.”

You showed a lot of pace on your debut in Zlín last year. What can you do this time?
“We simply want to improve on last year, do a solid drive and finish inside the top 10. It’s going to be tough because there are lots of good locals but we’ll be doing our best.”

Is it working out with your new co-driver Stuart Loudon?
“Stuart’s level is very high to be fair to him and his preparation and dedication are really good. It started well in Ypres and it’s also helping that he’s doing the WRC Academy.”

Mikkelsen goes forth to Barum Czech Rally Zlín

Posted: August 28, 2012 11:40 AM

ŠKODA UK Motorsport’s 23-year old Andreas Mikkelsen is something of a veteran when it comes to the Barum Czech Rally Zlín (August 31-2 September), having contested it more times than any other round of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge. At his fourth attempt this year, Andreas is aiming to score his best result at ŠKODA’s home round of the series as he tries to extend his lead at the top of the Drivers’ standings.

Co-driven by Ola Fløene, Andreas made his IRC debut in Zlín in 2009, while he finished 5th in both 2010 and 2011. Last year was his best performance, leading the event in his factory-prepared Fabia S2000 before losing time with a puncture.

ŠKODA has won the Barum Czech Rally Zlín for the last three years, and no fewer than 12 Fabia S2000s will contest the this year’s event – including the four leading drivers in the current IRC standings: Andreas, Jan Kopecký, Juho Hänninen (ŠKODA Motorsport) and Sepp Wiegand (ŠKODA Deutschland). There are also private entries from Roman Kresta, Karl Kruuda, Jaromír Tarabus, Emil Triner and ŠKODA Ireland’s Robert Barrable.

“I’ve done the Barum Rally more times than any other IRC event, so I know it well. We were very fast there last year, until a puncture slowed us down, and I can’t wait to go back there for the forth time. After victory in Sibiu, I’m feeling quite confident and I’m going there for a good result. Barum is a special event – all the ŠKODA Fabias will be very fast, because they are every year, and it won’t be easy fighting with the likes of Jan and Juho, but I think we can put on a good display.”

This year’s Barum Czech Rally Zlín contains 15 stages covering 155.96 miles (251.62kms) over fast and bumpy asphalt roads, with the centralised service park located at the Barum tyre factory in Otrokovice. The action begins with the traditional and spectacular night-time 5.81 mile (9.36km) superspecial around the city centre on Friday 31 August, with cars doing three high-speed laps in reverse running order – with the top cars finishing at around 23.00.

Leg 1 continues the following day at 08.32, with two runs of the Slušovice (SS2/4) and Pindula (SS3/5) stages (with the former using the Slušovice motor racing circuit and broadcast live on Eurosport) and two runs through the Lukov (SS6/8) and Tesák (SS7/9) before the finish, after 86.5 miles (139.22kms) at 23.00.

Leg 2 on Sunday 2 September gets underway at 08.27 and contains a further three stages in the morning, all of which are repeated in the afternoon. Two of which are over 12.5 miles (20kms) long, with the 14.5 mile (23.38km) Maják stage (SS12/15) the longest of the event – run in the reverse direction to the last year and broadcast live on Eurosport. The finish ceremony is in Zlín at 14.30.


Posted: August 28, 2012 11:38 AM

The thrilling race for the 2012 Intercontinental Rally Challenge title will step up a gear in Czech Republic next week when three of the all-action series’ best drivers go head-to-head for glory in front of live television cameras on the testing high-speed stages around the industrial city of Zlín.

Defending IRC champion Andreas Mikkelsen, three-time runner-up Jan Kopecký and 2010 winner Juho Hänninen, who also holds the record for the most IRC victories, will all be in action on the Tarmac spectacular, which is set to attract more than 200,000 fans to savour the electrifying atmosphere.

Kicking off with a superspecial stage through the heart of host city Zlín in south-east Czech Republic on Friday 31 August, Barum Czech Rally Zlín, a mainstay of the IRC since it began in 2007, will feature 15 stages, including four produced by Eurosport Events for live coverage on Eurosport and Czech TV.

The bulk of the competition will take place on Saturday 2 September with four repeated stages, including the live Slušovice ‘circuit’ stage, which returns to the itinerary after a five-year absence, and is set to attract huge numbers of spectators.

Sunday’s route consists of three stages run twice. Each loop concludes with the Maják stage, which will also be televised live. Maják, which at 23.38 kilometres is the longest of the event, returned to the schedule for the first time in 20 years in 2011 although it will run in a reverse direction this season.

Once again Otrokovice, a short distance from Zlín, will host the permanent service park and is a must for fans wanting to get close up to the cars and drivers.

Barum Czech Rally Zlín is famed for its high-speed stages on bumpy and sometimes broken Tarmac through a mixture of urban areas and narrow woodland stretches where experience and commitment behind the wheel are essential.

Although the stages on Saturday and Sunday will ultimately decide the outcome of the rally, Friday night’s superspecial in Zlín can’t be taken for granted. Run under the cover of darkness, the stage comprises three laps of Zlin’s central area and crosses over a railway line at one point. With part of the stage on cobbled streets, grip is at a premium, particularly in the event of rain. Competitors tackle the stage in reverse order from 21:15hrs local time and crews are released from the start in regular intervals, which means there will be as many as seven cars on the concrete wall-lined course at any one time.

While the weather in central Europe in late August is characterised by sun and warm temperatures, rain is a frequent hazard on the event. With chunks of the route running under tree cover, grip levels can be unpredictable and drivers running further up the order often benefit from a cleaner stage surface due to the practice of corner ‘cutting’ dragging mud and debris onto the optimal line. Tyre compound choice is also a factor with crews often leaving their selection until the last possible moment to try to ensure they are using tyres best suited to the conditions.

Eurosport Events is producing live television coverage of Barum Czech Rally Zlín, which will be shown on Eurosport and Czech TV
Details below:

*Zlín might never have prospered had it not been for one Tomáš Bat’a, who founded a shoe factory there in 1894 and watched the town flourish into a university city.
*Such is the appeal of Barum Czech Rally Zlín internationally that 23 nations will be represented on this year’s event.
*The IRC first came to town in its inaugural season in 2007. Along with Rallye Sanremo and the Geko Ypres Rally, Barum Czech Rally Zlín is the only other ever-present event on the IRC schedule.
*Six manufacturers – Honda, M-Sport (Ford), Peugeot, Renault, ŠKODA and Subaru – currently contest the IRC and all will be in action in Zlín.
*A generous helping of roast pork with dumpling and sauerkraut is a popular Czech dish, as are soups.

After 1.2s separated Jan Kopecký and Freddy Loix at the finish of last year’s Barum Czech Rally Zlín, a similarly dramatic climax is expected to round nine of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge next week.

While Loix, the 2010 winner, won’t be in action this season, Kopecký will still face strong opposition from fellow ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000 drivers Juho Hänninen and Andreas Mikkelsen. Neither driver has won the event before while Mikkelsen, who drives for ŠKODA’s UK importer, has yet to win an IRC round on asphalt. Kopecký, meanwhile, can claim his second Czech title with a strong result. The national championship is running on the back of the main IRC and European championship events.

Sepp Wiegand is a Zlín novice but will be a contender for more IRC points in his ŠKODA Auto Deutschland entry following his late retirement from a potential podium on the previous round in Romania. Roman Kresta, a three-time Zlín winner, will also be armed with a Fabia S2000 as will ŠKODA Ireland’s Robert Barrable, Estonian youngster Karl Kruuda and Czech veteran Emil Triner, a former factory driver for the Czech make.

Pavel Valoušek heads the Peugeot challenge in his 207 Super 2000 and the rapid Czech driver will be anxious to make amends for the huge accident that forced his retirement from the rally last season. Florian Gonon and Micha? So?owow will also be driving the French machines, while Swede Patrik Flodin will be capable of success in his Petter Solberg Engineering M-Sport Ford Fiesta S2000 on the back of his maiden IRC podium on last month’s Sibiu Rally.

IRC Production Cup
Subaru is sending its three big guns – Andreas Aigner, Toshi Arai and Jarkko Nikara – to Zlín where they will come up against a host of local drivers in their Impreza R4 STIs. Zlín resident Jan Jelínek, Jaroslav Orsák and Vojt?ch Štajf are all expected to run at the front in the IRC Production Cup, while Marco Cavigioli returns to the series after coming close to claiming the title in 2011. After a switch to a Renault Clio R3 for the recent brace of gravel events ruled him out of contention for IRC Production Cup points, Frenchman Robert Consani is back in his Mégane RS bidding to narrow Aigner’s title lead.

With IRC 2WD Cup leader Harry Hunt not including the trip to Czech Republic on his schedule for 2012, Renault’s Robert Consani and Honda’s Martin Kangur will be aiming to take full advantage as they target the coveted crown for the first time. However, Jan ?erný is one of several leading Czech pilots capable of causing an upset following a spate of class wins in his domestic championship this year. Josef Peták could also spring a surprise on his return to two-wheel-drive competition while Italian Davide Medici won the IRC 2WD Cup on Rallye Sanremo last season and will be rapid in his Clio, as will fellow Renault drivers Petr Brynda and Lubomír Mina?ík.

ŠKODA Motorsport star on achieving IRC success on home soil

Barum Czech Rally Zlín is considered one of the hardest events to master in the IRC. Why?
“The roads in the Czech Republic are different to other Tarmac rallies. They are bumpy, fast, you have loose stones on the corners and you can also find small holes in the road, although the organisation is doing a lot of work to try to fix these problems. Because the stages are high speed it can be easy to make a mistake.”

And the changeable weather can make it even harder…?
“The rally is one week later than last year and again the weather can be changing. It’s been hot and very dry in the Czech Republic recently but this can change. If it rains then the Tarmac in places can be like driving on ice and you really need to be cautious.”

What result can you achieve?
“I will try to go as fast as possible but it’s not going to be easy because I have to think about the Czech championship and getting the points for that and not taking big risks to win the rally.”

How much pressure do you feel as the Czech hero?
“I’m a Czech driver, not a Czech hero! To be honest it gives me more motivation to see the Czech people waving their flags and it gives you a really special feeling in your body because you know you are doing a good job.”

Eurosport and Czech TV will show four stages of the event live. How good will this be?
“It’s really good for the fans watching on TV but it’s also a really great chance for people around the world to see the Czech fans and all the support they show for the rally. This is the proper way to support the rally and these pictures will be shown around the world.”

Seeded Entry List

Posted: August 28, 2012 11:37 AM

Times: Eurosport’s LIVE coverage of Barum Czech Rally Zlín

Posted: August 17, 2012 10:46 AM

Times are Irish / UK

Saturday 1 September
09:00hrs-10:00hrs: SS2 Slusovice 1 (16.20 kilometres)
12:00hrs-13:00hrs: SS4 Slusovice 2 (16.20 kilometres)

Sunday 2 September
09:00hrs-10:00hrs CET: SS12 Majak 1 (22.80 kilometres)
12:00hrs-13:00hrs CET: SS15 Majak 2 (22.80 kilometres)

Live TV Times

Posted: May 25, 2012 10:47 AM

Times are Ireland / UK

Saturday 1 September
09:00hrs-10:00hrs: SS2 Slusovice 1 (16.20 kilometres)
12:00hrs-13:00hrs: SS4 Slusovice 2 (16.20 kilometres)

Sunday 2 September
09:00hrs-10:00hrs: SS12 Majak 1 (22.80 kilometres)
12:00hrs-13:00hrs CET: SS15 Majak 2 (22.80 kilometres)

Czech IRC high-speed thriller for live Eurosport coverage

Posted: May 25, 2012 10:46 AM

One of the fastest rounds of the all-action Intercontinental Rally Challenge, Barum Czech Rally Zlín, will benefit from four hours of live television coverage on Eurosport at primetime slots during the last weekend of the summer holidays.

Based in Zlín in south-east Czech Republic, the event was one of the founding rounds of the IRC in 2007. It regularly attracts huge numbers of spectators with 200,000 fans turning out to watch the spectacular action. Although the event often enjoys hot and sunny weather, changeable conditions can be a factor, which only adds to the drama on the stages.

As well as being one of the fastest rounds of the IRC, Rally Zlín is also ranked as being one of the most difficult due to the proliferation of high-speed blasts through forests and woodland, sections of broken Tarmac and the bumpy nature of some of the roads.

Eurosport will show both runs of the 16.20-kilometre Slusovice stage live on Saturday 1 September and both passes of the Majak stages – which measures 22.80 kilometres – including the rally’s final run, on Sunday 2 September. Domestic public free-to-air channel Czech TV 4 will simultaneously broadcast the live feed produced by Eurosport Events, the promoter of the IRC.

“Rally Zlín is traditionally one of the highlights of the IRC season largely due to the huge numbers of fans who flock to the stages, where the dramatic action will unfold,” said Antonello Lodoletti, the IRC Commercial Director. “The fact we can now bring live television coverage of the IRC to fans around the world is fantastic news because the footage will be packed full of drama and excitement.”

Spectacular footage captured by a Cineflex helicopter, plus the use of SimulCam technology, which Eurosport pioneered in rallying in 2011 and allows viewers to watch drivers tackling the same section of the stage at the same time for comparison purposes, will form the centrepiece of Eurosport’s live coverage of the event.

Rally Zlin, which takes place from 31 August-2 September, is ŠKODA’s home round of the IRC. The Czech make has triumphed on the rally for the past three seasons and will be one of the favourites for honours this season. Some 30 Super 2000 cars are expected from manufacturers including Ford (M-Sport), Peugeot and ŠKODA. Cars from Honda, Renault and Subaru will also be in action.

Eurosport’s coverage of Rally Zlin follows the thrilling live programming from Giru di Corsica-Tour de Corse, round four of the IRC, earlier this month.

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