Rally Hungary - 8-10 Nov 19

Posted: November 9, 2019 4:03 AM - 1428 Hits

Round 8 - 2019 European Rally Championship (ERC)

Live Results (Rally Hungary 2019) | Results also available at: rally-base results or ewrc-results.com
ERC Rally Radio | European Rally Championship (ERC) - fiaerc.com
Facebook Live (Selected Stages) www.facebook.com/FiaEuropeanRallyChampionship/
Event Website: Rally Hungary
Twitter: @FIAERC

First stage each day - Times are Ireland/UK
Free Practice - Fri - 06:30
Qualifying - Fri - 08:45
SS1 - Fri - 17:48
SS2 - Sat - 07:58
SS8 - Sun - 07:54

ERC event preview: Rally Hungary

Posted: November 7, 2019 4:49 PM

Overview
Three drivers will face off for the oldest international rally championship title in the world when Hungary hosts the hotly anticipated 2019 ERC season decider from 8-10 November.

Since 1953, the FIA European Rally Championship has created heroes with names such as Rauno Aaltonen, Miki Biasion, Vic Elford, Sandro Munari and Walter Röhrl, plus current leading names like Giandomenico Basso, Kajetan Kajetanowicz, Jan Kopecký, Esapekka Lappi and Alexey Lukyanuk all lifting the crown.

And Russian Lukyanuk can win the title for a second year in succession – providing he can overhaul the two drivers ahead of him, Chris Ingram from Great Britain, and Poland’s ?ukasz Habaj, who are bidding to clinch the FIA’s leading regional rally championship laurels for the first time.

Heading to Rally Hungary, a new addition to the ERC roster for 2019, 25-year-old Ingram leads the standings by 19 points from Habaj with Lukyanuk just nine points further back. Based on those numbers alone it might appear that Ingram is in the ascendency, but it’s certainly not that simple.

A maximum of 39 points are up for grabs in Hungary and with ERC drivers counting their best six scores over the season, Habaj and Lukyanuk are very much in the hunt despite the gap to Ingram.

While Habaj and Lukyanuk are set to drop four and three points respectively from their eventual totals, Ingram could end up discounting 12 points from his final score following the finish in Nyíregyháza.

Although Habaj and Lukyanuk have taken a win apiece in 2019, Ingram has yet to register an overall victory, instead focusing his efforts on winning the supporting ERC1 Junior title during the first six events of the year. While he ultimately came up short to Filip Mareš in his bid to win that accolade – and the 100,000 euros on offer to the champion – by a mere 0.3s on the deciding round in Czech Republic, points scored that weekend promoted him to the top of the overall table and gave him another goal to chase.

As well as hosting the overall championship decider, Rally Hungary marks the concluding round of the new-for-2019 Abarth Rally Cup when Italian Andrea Nucita and Poland’s Dariusz Polo?ski – separated by just eight points – will chase the title and a prize purse of 30,000 euros. Meanwhile, Briton Nabila Tejpar is aiming to beat double winner Ekaterina Stratieva (Bulgaria) to the ERC Ladies’ Trophy.

While the ERC2** and ERC3** titles have been settled in favour of Juan Carlos Alonso and Efrén Llarena respectively, the FIA European Rally Championship for Teams is undecided prior to Rally Hungary with three entrants (Saintéloc Junior Team, Toksport WRT and ACCR Czech Rally Team) possible winners.

Fourteen stages over a competitive distance of 211.52 kilometres await the ERC contenders, while organisers have attracted a 114-strong entry – including 29 top-of-the-range R5 cars between the International, National and Historic fields, as the latest exciting chapter in the history of Hungarian motorsport is written.

Rally Hungary in 100 words
Hungary returns to the ERC for the first time since 2003 with a new sealed-surface event in Nyíregyháza, north-east Hungary, approximately 150 minutes by car from the capital Budapest. While the event was effectively brand new for 2018 when it ran as the Nyíregyháza Rally and counted as the Hungarian championship finale, the city and surrounding region were regulars on the national scene in previous years. Four-time Hungarian champion and double ERC podium finisher Norbert Herczig talks of a “mixture of very fast and very narrow, but good quality stages”, while the event enjoys enthusiastic government and local authority support.

Talking points
*After relying on a crowdfunding campaign launched by his mother Jo to contest the Cyprus Rally, Chris Ingram resorted to auctioning off his old rally overalls to raise much needed funding to continue his title chase with Toksport WRT and become the first Briton since Vic Elford in 1967 to lift the crown.
*?ukasz Habaj stepped up his preparations for his ERC title challenge in Hungary with an outing on Partr - Sev.en Commodities Rally Vsetín last month. Forming part of the Czech Republic’s Rallysprint series, the country’s second-tier rally contest, the seven-stage event allowed Habaj to reacclimatise to asphalt competition follow the ERC’s gravel-based Cyprus Rally. He finished sixth overall.
*Alexey Lukyanuk took time out of his Rally Hungary preparations to coach Saintéloc team-mate Sean Johnston as the American gets to grips with the Citroën C3 R5 he’ll use for the first time on his step up from ERC3 to ERC1 level in Nyíregyháza.
*Four-time national champion Norbert Herczig will be seeking family advice ahead of his home round of the ERC. The Volkswagen-powered MOL Racing Team driver’s 16-year-old son Patric won the Hungarian Rallycross Championship on the Rabócsiring track, which hosts Rally Hungary’s opening superspecial.
*Filip Mareš is taking up the first of two prize drives from ERC promoter Eurosport Events for winning the 2019 ERC1 Junior Championship**. The Czech federation-backed promise drives a ŠKODA Fabia R5 Evo run by his idol Roman Kresta. Jan Hloušek is back on co-driving duty after partnering factory ŠKODA driver Jan Kopecký on the world championship events in Great Britain and Spain of late.
*András Hadik will be hoping the old adage ‘you’re only as good as your last rally’ holds true having won the Nyíregyháza Rally in 2018. For his return, the one-time ERC2 regular is armed with M-Sport’s latest take on the Ford Fiesta R5.
*Much is expected of Ferenz Vincze Jr, the 2019 Hungarian champion and a winner of four national championship rallies this season alone. The Korda Racing driver was third on the 2018 Nyíregyháza Rally. Like Vincze Jr, Pál Lovász is also preparing to make his ERC debut.
*After scoring his first ERC points of the year on the Cyprus Rally, Albert von Thurn und Taxis got back into Tarmac mode by finishing runner-up on Rally Idrija in Slovenia last month.
*János Puskádi, who returns to the ERC in his native Hungary after a three-year hiatus, placed fifth overall on the Slovenian event in a similar ŠKODA Fabia R5 Evo.
*Following his impressive showing on the Cyprus Rally, ex-GT racer and 2018 Austrian rally champion Niki Mayr-Melnhof will be hoping to show off his Tarmac-driving skills in Hungary.
*Double ERC2 champion Tibor Érdi Jr starts his home round of the European championship desperate to score points for the first time in the ŠKODA Fabia R5 entered by his family team.
*With 13 Hungarian class titles to his name, Róbert Bútor is not to be underestimated, especially after he won the TAXI4 Veszprém Rallye – a major national championship event – in the summer, his last start.
*Ireland’s Callum Devine makes his first ERC start since 2016 and his first in a top-class car after landing a deal to drive a Hyundai i20 R5 under the Hyundai Motorsport N banner.
*After finishing second on the Nyíregyháza Rally in 2018 and runner-up in the opening two rounds of this season’s Hungarian championship, ERC returnee Frigyes Turán will be aiming to deliver another strong performance on his second outing in a ŠKODA Fabia R5.
*Simone Tempestini returns to the ERC a four-time Romanian champion following his latest triumph on the recent TESS Rally Bresov, his fifth win out of six starts on home soil in 2019 in a Hyundai i20 R5.
*Paulo Nobre has travelled from his native Brazil to contest all rounds of the ERC this season. The Palmeirinha Rally driver scored his second top 10 of the year on the most recent round in Cyprus.
*Andrea Nucita and Dariusz Polo?ski will fight it out for the honour of winning the first ERC-based Abarth Rally Cup – and the 30,000 euros on offer to the champion. They will also fight for the runner-up spot in the final ERC2 points table behind provisional champion Juan Carlos Alonso.
*Hungarian Mátyás Nagy will make his long-awaited ERC2 debut after car eligibility issues forced him to scrap his planned Barum Czech Rally Zlín appearance in the summer.
*Ex-downhill mountain bike champion Erik Cais can take the second place in ERC3 with a strong class result on Rally Hungary in his ACCR Czech Rally Team-entered Ford Fiesta R2T.
*The 20-year-old will face strong opposition from Toksport WRT pair Orhan Avcioglu (Turkey) and Germany’s double ERC Junior champion Marijan Griebel, who is stepping back to ERC3 level with the main goal of helping Toksport win the FIA European Rally Championship for Teams.
*Miklós Csomós is gearing up for his second ERC3 start of 2019 after placing eighth in class on Barum Czech Rally Zlín. The Hungarian is the winner of his national 2WD and Peugeot 208 R2 Cup titles. Meanwhile, Rally Hungary represents Romanian Eugen Caragui’s first ERC start.
*Briton Nabila Tejpar starts Rally Hungary with a 14-point advantage over Ekaterina Stratieva as she bids to win the ERC Ladies’ Trophy for the first time. Stratieva, who won the ERC Ladies’ Trophy in 2014 and 2015, continues with the Saintéloc Junior Team, whom she joined for her Cyprus Rally debut.

The title contenders
Chris Ingram (Great Britain), ERC1, Toksport WRT (First position, 135 points)
Co-driver: Ross Whittock (Great Britain) Car: ŠKODA Fabia R5 Evo Best 2019 result: 2 (Cyprus)

?ukasz Habaj (Poland), ERC1, Sports Racing Technologies (Second position, 116 points)
Co-driver: Daniel Dymurski (Poland) Car: ŠKODA Fabia R5 Best 2019 result: 1 (Azores)

Alexey Lukyanuk (Russia), ERC1, Saintéloc Junior Team (Third position, 107 points)
Co-driver: Alexey Arnautov (Russia) Car: Citroën C3 R5 Best 2019 result: 1 (Poland)

What would winning the ERC title mean to you?
Chris Ingram: “Winning the ERC would be a life ambition achieved. It would mean an enormous amount to me to be able to wake up every day having achieved a dream and would give me a huge amount of self-belief and satisfaction. This is everything to me.”

?ukasz Habaj: “I am just concentrated on delivering the best performance. It is quite an unbelievable opportunity so it’s better not to think about it at the moment.”

Alexey Lukyanuk: “Of course it would be a good result for the season for all our efforts and our sponsors and fans. For me it would be a second title in the ERC.”

How would it change your life?
Chris Ingram: “Winning would make a huge difference to me personally and to my career and give me an immense sense of pride. Having the ERC title to my name would be a huge opportunity to use the publicity of the accolade to boost my profile massively in the UK and Europe, which would hopefully help me take the next step up in my career in 2020.”

?ukasz Habaj: “It would be a great pay-off for many years of hard work and huge sacrifice of myself and many people around me. Maybe it would help bring rally sport back to its popularity in my country.”

Alexey Lukyanuk: “When it happens for the first time it’s maybe more exciting and brings something. For us it basically changes nothing, all stays the same, there is not a lot of money for the next programme.”

In your mind, what do you need to do to win the title?
Chris Ingram: “I will drive consistently and fast like in Barum and I believe that will be enough. I also need a strong car and team, like we always have. Result-wise, if Alexey wins, I need to finish on the podium. If ?ukasz wins, I need to finish second to him or ahead of both of them.”

?ukasz Habaj: “Stay calm and deliver the best performance of my life, something I was getting myself ready to do for many years.”

Alexey Lukyanuk: “Pretty simple, score much more points than our rivals, that’s it. It’s not so hard in terms of strategy, we need to score maximum and see what happens.”

Of your two title rivals, who do you fear the most?
Chris Ingram: “I do not fear anyone. I am driving against myself and want to become the best version of myself. However, I have huge respect for Alexey and ?ukasz and their co-drivers. If I had to say one driver, I would say Alexey because he is already a champion and he drives at a savage pace.”

?ukasz Habaj: “I don’t fear anybody. I think both of my closest rivals are equally dangerous. Alexey because he is unbelievably fast, Chris because he is fast, consistent and has more points but I honestly respect all the other rivals too and I do hope they will be able to keep up the pace of my closest opponents because this increases my chances. For sure this will be very interesting rally.”

Alexey Lukyanuk: “I don’t fear anyone.”

How will you prepare for the event?
Chris Ingram: “We will test before, which will be critical, and do our usual preparation. Psychologically, I am feeling excited, relaxed and confident, this is what I need the most.”

?ukasz Habaj: “We did great test session by participating in Vsetin Rally. I am sure it will help.”

Alexey Lukyanuk: “As always we are looking for the data about the location and the stages. We also do our regular fitness. Of course, we are working on the set-up of the car, trying to do something extra with the set-up for the unpredictable conditions. But it’s really routine things.”

Abarth Rally Cup head to head: Nucita v Polo?ski
The first Abarth Rally Cup held within the FIA European Rally Championship will go down to the wire on Rally Hungary with Andrea Nucita and Dariusz Polo?ski locked in combat and just eight points apart. Italian Nucita has won the category for the Pirelli-equipped Abarth 124 rally three times compared to Pole Polo?ski’s solitary triumph. With Rally Hungary unchartered territory for both, a straight fight is expected for the coveted title and the 30,000 euros awarded to the inaugural champion.

Form guide: Ferenc Vincze Jr
Third on the 2018 Nyíregyháza Rally, Ferenc Vincze Jr, 28, starts his country’s round of the FIA European Rally Championship with the national title in the bag following an impressive season that’s included a quartet of wins in a Korda Racing-run ŠKODA Fabia R5, plus a podium on the last round in Pécs, home of the Mecsek Rallye.

How to follow?
On TV and online: Live coverage of the ceremonial start, plus SS4, SS5, SS10, SS12 and the stop line of SS14 on Facebook. Daily highlights on Eurosport, Eurosport Player. Videos on YouTube. ERC All Access on Eurosport on 12 November. Event highlights broadcast around the world, including on M4 Sports in Hungary.
Videos, news update and live timing: Available at FIAERC.com
ERC Radio: Live from the end of all stages and selected service park visits. Available at FIAERC.com or download the official ERC App.
Social media: Follow the ERC on Facebook, Instagram, Twitter.

Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy Driver to Compete in European Rally Championship Round - Devine receives Priority drive from Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing

Posted: October 28, 2019 5:08 AM

Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy driver Callum Devine has secured one of the biggest opportunities of his career as he has been given a priority entry by Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing in the final round of the FIA European Rally Championship, Rally Hungary, at the wheel of a Hyundai i20 R5.

Devine (25), from Co Derry, and his co-driver, Brian Hoy, from Co Fermanagh, will drive the car in the prestigious event next month. Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy have arranged for the car to be managed and run by, Philip Case and his team at PCRS, with support of Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing.

The event will give Devine, the winner of the 2017 Billy Coleman Award, a chance to demonstrate his ability in one of motorsport’s biggest rallying series outside of the World Rally Championship.

He said: “I’m really excited about this opportunity and seeing what myself and Brian can achieve in an R5 car outside Ireland. I’m not one to shy away from a challenge and yes, while this will be a great experience, I want to be competitive at this level. Between the Junior World Rally Championship and the Irish Tarmac Championship, I’ve built up plenty of international and R5 experience over the last two seasons and I see this as chance to step up a level.”

Hot from his recent win on the Donegal Harvest Stages Rally, Devine has spent the last two years proving why he is one of Motorsport Ireland’s elite drivers. This year alone, the Co. Derry driver has enjoyed many impressive outings in his first full season in an R5 car – including podium finishes at the Rally of the Lakes, the Donegal International Rally and the Ulster Rally, as well as winning the FIA Celtic Trophy.

The Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy has developed a strong relationship with Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing over the last year, which has seen some of our best young rally talent take advantage of the opportunity to not only drive a top spec i20 R5 car but also to experience what it is like to be involved with a professional rally team.

Andrew Johns, Customer Racing, Hyundai Motorsport GmbH, said:
“Having Callum in the car for Rally Hungary is a good opportunity for both him and Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing. For Callum it’s an opportunity to show his capabilities in front of an international audience, but it’s also to chance to have an i20 R5 competing in the European championship – one of the most competitive series for in the R5 category. With PCRS Callum will be working with one our top customer teams, who have shown the good performance with the car all season in Britain and Ireland, including running Tom Cave to third in class at Wales Rally GB.”

The Rally Academy has been set up to encourage young rally drivers to follow a clear pathway to success from competing in the junior entry level classes right up to experiencing world class competition cars like the Hyundai i20 R5.

Leo Hassett, CEO Motorsport Ireland, said:
“Encouraging young talent and providing them with the opportunity to experience what it is like to become part of a professional set up is very important for us as we develop the Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy programmes further.

“The opportunity for Callum and Brian to work with a professional team like Philip Case Rally Sport, who will be running the car, at a prestigious European Rally Championship event in Hungary is priceless for their career development. I know that they will be determined to showcase their talent on the international stage.

“We are very happy to build this link with Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing and look forward to working with them on a variety of projects in 2020.”

Rally Hungary takes place between 8th and 10th of November and consists of 14 stages totalling more than 200km.

Rally Hungary is the final round of the FIA European Rally Championship, based in Nyíregyháza in north-eastern Hungary. The event takes place on the 8/9/10 of November consisting of 14 stages totalling just over 200 competitive km.

Event Website / Details

Posted: September 5, 2019 5:36 AM

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