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European Rally Championship
Updated: 10 min 35 sec ago

Extreme interest: ERC champion* Ingram joins Extreme E Drivers’ Programme

Wed, 11/20/2019 - 15:00

Chris Ingram, who won the 2019 FIA European Rally Championship* in a final-stage decider on Rally Hungary earlier this month, has been inducted into the Extreme E Drivers’ Programme.

The 25-year-old Briton was selected after he declared an interest in competing in the off-road racing series for electric SUVs, which also includes multiple FIA World Rally title winner Sébastien Ogier and double ERC3 champion Zoltán Bessenyey.

Extreme E, due to get underway in February 2021, recently added the Nepalese Himalayas to event locations in the Amazon, Greenland and Saudi Arabia.

It aims to “break the mould in motorsport and entertainment with its E-SUVs racing across five of the world’s most remote and formidable environments that have already been affected by climate change or human interference. The goal: raising awareness, driving sustainability and inspiring action”.

Meanwhile, those included on the Drivers’ Programme will be recommended to teams looking for candidates to fill their Extreme E entries.

*Subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA

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Rally Liepaja inter-city route gets 2020 ERC repeat

Wed, 11/20/2019 - 12:00

Rally Liepāja organisers are planning to repeat their hugely successful inter-city format when the event forms part of the FIA European Rally Championship calendar for the eighth time in 2020.

Confirmed on the eight-event ERC schedule from 29-31 May following recent confirmation of extended Latvian government support, the high-speed gravel event will once again feature stages around the cities of Liepāja and Talsi to the west of the capital Riga.

Raimonds Strokšs, Director of RA Sports, the company behind Rally Liepāja, said: “I would like to thank the Government of Latvia for valuing the gains received by organising such a high level event in Latvia, providing the economic stimulus for Liepāja and the whole region Kurzeme, as well as pushing forward the recognition of Latvia on a global scale by the means of Eurosport TV channels worldwide.

“Since 2013, Rally Liepāja has established its significance in both Latvian and European context – this year, for the first time, it was organised in an especially large territory, stretching from Talsi to Liepāja. That made it possible to include in the itinerary the most challenging Latvian special stages, which was appreciated by our international partners, who are looking forward to returning here.

“For that, the event will retain its current format, covering the area from Talsi to Liepāja and continuing showcasing the Latvian rally traditions in the highest level of competition.”

The post Rally Liepaja inter-city route gets 2020 ERC repeat appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

All-new, ERC-bound Peugeot 208 Rally 4 launched

Tue, 11/19/2019 - 12:00

This is the all-new Peugeot 208 Rally 4, the successor to the standard-setting Peugeot 208 R2, which powered Efrén Llarena to an ERC3 and ERC3 Junior double in 2019*.

Based on the new 208 road car, which comes with the latest advanced technology, and confirming to the FIA’s renamed Rally 4 (R4) rules, the 208 Rally 4 will be eligible for the FIA European Rally Championship and available from the second quarter of 2020, although Llarena and co-driver Sara Fernández will put the car through its paces on this weekend’s Rally Comunidad de Madrid RACE.

The car is the culmination of a design, test and development phase dating back to the summer of 2018. It features a three-cylinder turbocharged, 1.2-litre engine using the latest PureTech technology, Magneti Marelli engine management system and SADEV gearbox.

Ahead of the completion of the FIA homologation process at the end of the first quarter of 2020, Peugeot Sport will take pre-orders at the beginning of January 2020 with the car costing €66,000 plus tax. The initial production will be earmarked for one-make competitions in France and Spain.

Did you know? More than 450 examples of the Peugeot 208 R2 were sold worldwide.

Photo: Flavien Duhamel/Peugeot Sport

*Subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA

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ERC Junior Wagner triumphs outright in Austria

Mon, 11/18/2019 - 18:00

Simon Wagner underlined his potential with a first Austrian championship victory last weekend.

A podium finisher at both ERC3 Junior and ERC1 Junior level, Wagner won Rallye W4 in his homeland in a Eurosol Racing Team ŠKODA Fabia R5 Evo with Anne Katharina Stein co-driving.

Despite his achievement, Wagner described it as an “almost perfect” end to the season after his younger brother Julian missed out on the Austrian title when he retired from the lead with gearbox failure, leaving former ERC regular Hermann Neubauer to claim the crown.

“We can only say thank you to everyone who made this brilliant weekend possible and to ŠKODA Motorsport and our team for the perfect ŠKODA Fabia R5 Evo,” said Simon Wagner. “Unfortunately, it wasn't supposed to work with a double podium for the Wagner brothers again but 11 out of 13 best times for Julian and me are a clear sign. Congratulations to Hermann Neubauer on the well-deserved title.

Photo: Facebook.com/simon.wagner.560

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How Nucita bagged the ERC Abarth Rally Cup

Sun, 11/17/2019 - 12:00

In its first season as part of the FIA European Rally Championship, the Abarth Rally Cup lived up to the make’s illustrious history in the sport by producing a final-round title decider on the ultra-challenging Rally Hungary.

Italy’s Andrea Nucita and Dariusz Polónski from Poland went head to head throughout the campaign in identical 124 rally cars, with Nucita coming out on top following a year-long battle that began on Rally Islas Canarias in May.

Neither of them took victory first time out: Alberto Monarri bagged the inaugural win, while Nucita had to settle for fourth after mechanical issues on day two of the event, having set the pace early on.

Nucita made amends for this disappointment however by claiming the next two event wins in Latvia and Poland.

His first victory of the season on Rally Liepāja came following an epic fightback, after he went into the second day 20 seconds adrift of his rival. A spin and a brush with a bank for Polónski then enabled Nucita to move into the lead, which he kept until the finish.

Nucita then edged Polónski after a similarly closely-fought event in Poland, which proved to be one of the battles of the year. Nucita closed to within two seconds of Polónski, with the pair taking tenths out of each other: both very much on the limit.

“It was a massive battle with Dariusz, he was so fast on the stages,” remembered Nucita. “I didn’t have more speed, but I don’t know why. It was me that needed checking, not the car!” Whatever he did, it seemed to work for Nucita, who usurped Polónski to come out on top on his rival’s home event.

But Polónski got revenge on the Rally di Roma Capitale in Italy, taking victory in front of Nucita’s home fans after the latter hit trouble on the closing superspecial in Ostia.

Nucita hit back with victory on the penultimate round, Barum Czech Rally Zlín, before a final event showdown in Hungary, during which both suffered dramas. Nucita however, made it to the finish to secure the coveted €30,000 winner’s prize.

It was a truly spectacular first season as part of the ERC. And the Abarth Rally Cup, with the iconic 124 as its centrepiece, has already established itself as an exciting and competitive one-make category.

Also new for the 2019 season was the updated 124 Abarth car, which had done more than 5000 kilometres of testing – courtesy of seven-time ERC event winner Alex Fiorio – with the aim of improving performance and handling, as well as introducing a new gravel kit. But the performance was designed to be accessible, meaning that the 124 is equally suitable for professionals and amateurs.

By Anthony Peacock

The post How Nucita bagged the ERC Abarth Rally Cup appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

OSCARO-backed ERC1 Junior driver Loubet takes world crown

Sat, 11/16/2019 - 12:00

ERC1 Junior graduate Pierre-Louis Loubet is the winner of the FIA World Rally Championship 2 category for 2019, narrowly beating three-time ERC champion Kajetan Kajetanowicz to top spot by three points.

Co-driven by Vincent Landais, Loubet impressed on two ERC1 Junior Championship appearances on the Azores Rallye and Rally Islas Canarias earlier this season with support from Team OSCARO. He was driving a ŠKODA Fabia R5 run by 2C Compétition.

Other ERC Junior graduates to impress during the season included the 2018 ERC1 Junior champion Nikolay Gryazin and ERC3 Junior graduate Fabio Andolfi. They finished fourth and fifth respectively.

The post OSCARO-backed ERC1 Junior driver Loubet takes world crown appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

SEAJETS reflects on ERC successes with Ingram and Lukyanuk

Fri, 11/15/2019 - 12:00

SEAJETS, which has one of the largest high-speed vessel fleets in the world, has savoured another successful season associated with the FIA European Rally Championship and drivers Chris Ingram and Alexey Lukyanuk.

With support from SEAJETS, Ingram claimed the prestigious FIA title with Lukyanuk finishing a close runner-up on Rally Hungary’s final-round decider last weekend.

Marios Iliopoulos, SEAJETS’ Head of Strategic Planning and Development, who actively and successfully participates in motorsport competitions (he was once again the Greek hillclimb champion in the racing saloon category) said: "All of us at SEAJETS are very happy to support this great sporting event in motorsport this year as well and congratulate Chris Ingram and Alexey Lukyanuk for their outstanding performance.SEAJETS, along with Chris and Alexey, are the frontrunners in the European championship, celebrating with them the first and second place.

“Success for us is the way forward, so remaining attached to our vision, we commit to keep supporting in the future the leading institutions and athletes that promote excellence, diligence and discipline, principles and values that characterise our entire activity."

 Ingram said: “Many thanks to Marios Iliopoulos and SEAJETS for supporting us. We have become the first British crew to win the FIA European Rally Championship in 50 years. A dream came true!”

The post SEAJETS reflects on ERC successes with Ingram and Lukyanuk appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

How unlucky Tejpar lost out on ERC Ladies’ Trophy glory

Thu, 11/14/2019 - 12:00

Nabila Tejpar has spoken about the stage 10 accident that ended her bid to win the ERC Ladies’ Trophy at her first attempt on Rally Hungary last weekend.

Tejpar was on course to beat rival Ekaterina Stratieva to first place on the FIA European Rally Championship season finale when she crashed out in treacherous conditions on the final morning of the event, striking a tree and rolling her Peugeot 208 R2.

“I just can’t believe it, I was so close,” said the Briton. “I’ve never seen road conditions like this on a rally before and I thought I’d got the measure of them. That stage in particular had claimed so many people but the whole rally was plagued by retirements due to the conditions. Sadly, that one just caught me out and I was a passenger, there was nothing I could do.”

Tejpar’s misfortune let in Stratieva for a third ERC Ladies’ Trophy title.

The post How unlucky Tejpar lost out on ERC Ladies’ Trophy glory appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

Mares demonstrates podium pace on ERC prize drive

Wed, 11/13/2019 - 12:00

Filip Mareš underlined his huge potential on his first of two prize drives from FIA European Rally Championship promoter Eurosport Events for winning the ERC1 Junior title earlier this season*.

Driving a ŠKODA Fabia R5 Evo for Kresta Racing, the ACCR Czech Rally Team driver was in third place on the Tarmac-based Rally Hungary last weekend when a puncture dropped him to fourth in the overall classification at the end of the opening leg, albeit 6.8s behind eventual winner Frigyes Turán.

Although his efforts to make up lost ground on the deciding day of the event were thwarted by powersteering failure, the 28-year-old nevertheless made a strong impression with a succession of top-five stage times alongside co-driver Jan Hloušek.

“It was bad luck for us to retire because I hoped it would be a good second day and another experience in wet conditions, but that’s rally,” said Mareš, who competes with the support of the Czech ASN, the Autoclub of the Czech Republic. “Shortly before the first stage of day two we lost the powersteering completely so it would have been very difficult to go through the whole loop. Together with the team we decided to retire, mainly because of safety reasons as there were some doubts about the real cause of the problem.”

Mareš was third starting Saturday’s closing test when he was delayed by a deflated tyre, which dropped him 6.8s off the final podium place overnight.

“We did a puncture maybe five or four kilometres before the end of the last stage of the day,” Mareš explained at the completion of Saturday’s first leg. “We had something a little bit broken in the steering but the first day was quite a good day for us, very tricky, something new for us because it was my first experience on this kind of [muddy] surface. But what is optimistic from my point of view is we are on the same pace as the local drivers although for sure Chris [Ingram] and Lucas [Alexey Lukyanuk] were flying at the front of the field so there is still a lot of work for us to do. But we completed the first day in touch of a podium position and Chris was not so far ahead of us.”

Mareš will take up the second of his two ERC1 Junior prize drives on the opening round of the 2020 FIA European Rally Championship, the Azores Rallye, which takes place on the Portuguese island of São Miguel from 26-28 March. By contesting this all-gravel event, Mareš will be able to grow his experience of driving on loose surfaces. And following the Azores Rallye, it is hoped that Mareš will be able to put together a full programme to mount an overall ERC title campaign in 2020.

*Subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA

The post Mares demonstrates podium pace on ERC prize drive appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

ERC champions* celebrated during spectacular Budapest ceremony

Tue, 11/12/2019 - 12:00

The 2019 FIA European Rally Championship title winners were honoured at the annual ERC Awards Ceremony in Budapest yesterday evening (Monday).

Held at the Budapest Music Center, the event was attended by a star-studded line-up including recently crowned FIA European champions Chris Ingram and Ross Whittock*, ERC2 title winner* Juan Carlos Alonso, plus ERC3 champions* Efrén Llarena and Sara Fernández.

Filip Mareš was present to collect his trophy for winning the ERC1 Junior title*, Llarena also received his ERC3 Junior award, while Andrea Nucita was recognised for his capture of the first Abarth Rally Cup to be run within the ERC structure, although he couldn’t attend in person.

Saintéloc Junior Team, represented by Vincent Ducher, was honoured as the winner of the FIA European Rally Championship for Teams*, Tomáš Kunc received the ERC Nations’ Cup on behalf of the ACCR Czech Rally Team. Ekaterina Stratieva collected the ERC Ladies’ Trophy.

Another notable attendee was Zelindo Melegari, the ERC2 regular who was injured in a crash on Barum Czech Rally Zlín in August, but who had scored sufficient points earlier in the season to secure third in the final ERC2 table.

Terenzio Testoni from ERC3 Junior tyre partner Pirelli, Anita Passalis, the FIA Sporting Delegate, and Jérôme Roussel, the FIA Category Manager – Regional Rally, were among those to present awards on the night.

Guests were treated to a number of spectacular videos produced by Eurosport’s production team, which looked back on a memorable season.

The full list of award winners appears below*:

FIA European Rally Championship ERC1:
First position: Chris Ingram (GBR)/Ross Whittock (GBR)
Second position: Alexey Lukyanuk (RUS)/Alexey Arnautov (RUS)
Third position: Łukasz Habaj/Daniel Dymurski (POL)

FIA European Rally Championship ERC2:
First position: Juan Carlos Alonso (ARG)/Juan Pablo Monasterolo (ARG)
Second position: Andrea Nucita (ITA) and Corrado Bonato (ITA)
Third position: Zelindo Melegari (ITA) and Łukasz Sitek (POL)

FIA European Rally Championship ERC3:
First position: Efrén Llarena (ESP)/Sara Fernández (ESP)
Second position: Erik Cais (CZE)/Jindřiška Žáková (CZE)
Third position: Ken Torn (EST)/Kauri Pannas (EST)

FIA ERC1 Junior Championship:
First position: Filip Mareš (CZE)
Second position: Chris Ingram (GBR)
Third position: Mattias Adielsson (SWE)

FIA ERC3 Junior Championship:
First position: Efrén Llarena (ESP)
Second position: Ken Torn (EST)
Third position: Sindre Furuseth (NOR)

FIA European Rally Championship for Teams:
First position: Saintéloc Junior Team (FRA)
Second position: Toksport WRT (DEU/TUR)
Third position: ACCR Czech Rally Team (CZE)

Abarth Rally Cup:
First position: Andrea Nucita (ITA)
Second position: Dariusz Poloński (POL)
Third position: Alberto Monarri (ESP)

ERC Nations’ Cup:
First position: ACCR Czech Rally Team
Second position: Rallye Team Spain
Third position: FPAK Portugal Team ERC

ERC Ladies’ Trophy:
First: Ekaterina Stratieva (BGR)
Second position: Nabila Tejpar (GBR)
Third position: Catie Munnings (GBR)

The 2020 FIA European Rally Championship gets underway on the Azores Rallye, which takes place on the ever-spectacular Portuguese island of São Miguel from 26-28 March. Contested over eight rounds, next year’s ERC schedule also includes Rally Islas Canarias, Rally Liepāja, 77th Rally Poland, Rally di Roma Capitale, Barum Czech Rally Zlín, Cyprus Rally and Rally Hungary.

*Subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA.

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ERC would suit Devine just fine

Mon, 11/11/2019 - 18:00

Callum Devine plans to use his maiden FIA European Rally Championship podium as a catalyst to a full campaign in 2020.

Devine was one of a number of runners to master the challenging weather conditions during the Rally Hungary weekend and came through to finish third overall in a Hyundai i20 R5 run by Hyundai Motorsport N and supported by his national ASN, Motorsport Ireland.

Speaking following the finish in Nyíregyháza, Devine said: “The ERC is our main plan for next year if we can get everything together. This was a good learning curve for us to see what we’re up against next year. We’ll see where we go from here.”

Devine also conceded his podium finish had exceeded pre-event expectations. “I didn’t think coming to this rally [it would be possible] because it was a last-minute plan put together between Hyundai Motorsport Customer Racing and Motorsport Ireland, so to be here with this result is fantastic for us. From a rally point of view, it was extremely challenging, probably the hardest rally I ever did for myself and Brian. I’m really pleased.”

Co-driver Brian Hoy added: “Callum definitely made the most of what he was given this weekend and definitely made a really good impression. We’re happy with this.”

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From ERC Junior rookie to European champion*: Ingram nets the ultimate prize

Mon, 11/11/2019 - 12:00

Chris Ingram’s FIA European Rally Championship tittle success* alongside co-driver Ross Whittock completes his transition from rookie to overall champion in a space of six seasons.

He began his European adventure in a Renault Twingo in 2014, earning the Colin McRae ERC Flat Out Trophy on the Circuit of Ireland, only his second appearance in the championship, which ultimately ended in a huge crash.

A chance with Peugeot UK followed before he was recruited by the ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team. After losing out on the 2016 ERC3 Junior title on a final-round decider to team-mate Marijan Griebel in Liepāja, Ingram bounced back to take the crown the following season, this time ahead of fellow Opel driver Jari Huttunen.

That result, along with the prize purse from Eurosport Events, helped Ingram secure a step up to ERC1 Junior for 2018 and he narrowly lost out on championship glory to Nikolay Gryazin at the end of his first campaign at R5 level.

Despite limited finances – which had to be bolstered by a crowd-funding campaign launched by his mother plus the support of his Toksport WRT team – Ingram took the title battle to the final round in August, only to miss out on first place to Filip Mareš by 0.3s. But that defeat on Barum Czech Rally Zlín, which he completed leading the overall standings due to his early season scores, served as a catalyst to a, at times, unlikely title push.

“It’s been a bloody hard road to get but this is everything to us,” said Ingram, a 25-year-old from Manchester in the UK. “Thank you so much to everyone who has helped us, everyone who has supported us. The support has been absolutely unbelievable and we are so grateful.

“It’s been such a hard year but I’ve not done this alone. Ross has been unbelievable, he’s the most reliable guy, I’m a complete dope. But he’s the most focused person in the whole world. The team have been absolutely amazing. The car has been perfect. Thank you so much to them for making it happen.”

Ingram took the ERC title by nine points following a dramatic final stage on Rally Hungary yesterday when both he and title rival Alexey Lukyanuk suffered punctures.

*Subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA

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Celebration time for ERC Abarth Rally Cup winner Nucita

Mon, 11/11/2019 - 06:00

Andrea Nucita was able to celebrate winning the first Abarth Rally Cup to take place within the FIA European Rally Championship following his battling drive on Rally Hungary.

Co-driven by Bernardo di Caro, Nucita restarted on Sunday’s second leg knowing that a finish would be enough to secure the laurels and the 30,000 euros on offer to the champion.

While Nucita duly finished, his rival Dariusz Poloński’s early retirement meant it was a relatively calm run through the closing stages, despite the testing weather conditions and a clutch issue.

The post Celebration time for ERC Abarth Rally Cup winner Nucita appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

Stratieva wins ERC Ladies’ Trophy after dramatic twist

Sun, 11/10/2019 - 23:00

The ERC Ladies’ Trophy title battle took a dramatic twist over the course of the morning, as points leader Nabila Tejpar’s run came to an abrupt end on SS10. 

The British driver ran wide and hit a tree, rolling over as a result, although she and co-driver Hugo Magalhães were uninjured.

Bulgarian Stratieva therfore knew that a finish would secure a third ERC Ladies’ Trophy title, and she duly negotiated her way through the treacherous stages to secure the points she needed.

The post Stratieva wins ERC Ladies’ Trophy after dramatic twist appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

Czech federation-backed Cais wins ERC3 to secure second place in final order

Sun, 11/10/2019 - 22:00

Despite receiving a 20-second penalty for a late check-out from Saturday morning service while his team rushed to complete a gearbox change, Erik Cais completed a dominant first victory over Marijan Griebel, winning ERC3 on Rally Hungary by more than seven minutes.

Griebel was left to rue a lack of wet weather tyres as the conditions turned for the worse heading into Sunday’s second leg and adopted a cautious strategy to bring his Toksport WRT Peugeot 208 R2 home in a comfortable second position.

A fresh downpour during SS9 meant that Cais took it relatively carefully as Saturday morning leader Miklós Csomós claimed the stage win. Conditions were far worse on the next test which allowed Cais to pull away further from Griebel behind.

Csomós then took a popular city stage win in Nyíregyháza to end the loop on a positive note.

After going off the road on the opening day, Ohran Avciouglu returned in his Toksport Peugeot but alternator issues affected his speed.

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Turan wins Rally Hungary, Ingram clinches ERC title in final-stage decider

Sun, 11/10/2019 - 21:00

Toksport WRT’s Chris Ingram has become the first British driver to win the FIA European Rally Championship title for 52 years after finishing fourth in a dramatic season showdown in Hungary**.

Alongside co-driver Ross Whittock, the ŠKODA Fabia R5-powered Ingram overcame two tyre deflations – the second coming on the final stage of the event – and a spin to finish the season on 141 points, taking into account dropped scores and leg bonus points.

Saintéloc Junior Team’s Russian Alexey Lukyanuk finished second to rally winner Frigyes Turán after suffering his own puncture on the last test. He and co-driver Alexey Arnautov could only pick up two Sunday leg bonus points, and finished on 131 points, nine adrift of Ingram and Whittock.

Ingram came into the weekend 19 points ahead of Sports Racing Technologies’ Łukasz Habaj, and a further nine ahead of Lukyanuk, the reigning champion. With the best six results out of eight counting towards the championship, Ingram was set to lose 12 points from his end-of-season total, with Habaj and Lukyanuk potentially dropping four and three respectively.

But in a dramatic final stage, Ingram came through to clinch the crown as Frigyes Turán took the Rally Hungary victory, his first in the ERC to become the eighth different winner in as many rounds in 2019.

Ingram’s success completes his transition from rookie to overall champion in a space of six seasons. He began his FIA European Rally Championship adventure in a Renault Twingo, earning the Colin McRae ERC Flat Out Trophy on the Circuit of Ireland, only his second appearance, which ended in a huge crash. A chance with Peugeot UK followed before he was recruited by the ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team. After losing out on the 2016 ERC3 Junior title on a final-round decider to team-mate Marijan Griebel in Liepāja, Ingram bounced back to take the crown the following season, this time ahead of team-mate Jari Huttunen.

That result helped Ingram secure a step up to ERC1 Junior for 2018 and he narrowly lost out on championship glory to Nikolay Gryazin at the end of his first campaign at R5 level. Despite limited finances – which had to be bolstered by a crowd-funding campaign launched by his mother plus the support of his Toksport WRT team – Ingram took the title battle to the final round, only to miss out on first place to Filip Mareš by 0.3s. But that defeat on Barum Czech Rally Zlín, which he completed leading the overall standings, served as a catalyst to a, at times, unlikely title push.

“It’s been a bloody hard road to get but this is everything to us,” said Ingram, a 25-year-old from Manchester in the UK. “Thank you so much to everyone who has helped us, everyone who has supported us. The support has been absolutely unbelievable and we are so grateful.  It’s been such a hard year but I’ve not done this alone. Ross has been unbelievable, he’s the most reliable guy, I’m a complete dope. But he’s the most focused person in the whole world. The team have been absolutely amazing. The car has been perfect. Thank you so much to them for making it happen.”

Lukyanuk’s final-stage puncture, meanwhile, denied him the event win and what have been a second title following Ingram’s drama ahead of him on the road. He settled for second as Callum Devine, driving a Hyundai Motorsport N-entered i20 R5, took third in his first ERC1 start made possible by backing from his national ASN, Motorsport Ireland.

Andrea Nucita celebrated Abarth Rally Cup success with Czech federation-supported Erik Cais’s win in ERC3 enough to secured second place in the final ranking behind provisional champion Efrén Llarena.

Ekaterina Stratieva won the ERC Ladies’ Trophy for a third time with her Saintéloc Junior Team winning the FIA European Rally Championship for Teams ahead of Toksport WRT and ACCR Czech Rally Team.

Leg two report: Wet-weather master Lukyanuk denied at the last as Turán triumphs
Recently-crowned national champion Ferenc Vincze won Sunday’s opening run, the 10.60-kilometre Óhuta-Fony stage, as title chasers Lukyanuk and Ingram hit trouble with the Russian losing his rear brakes from the beginning and Ingram dropping “about 5 or 10 seconds” following a half-spin and a stall.

Things got worse for Ingram in the morning’s second stage as a front-right puncture early on forced him to stop for a replacement before continuing. He lost more than two minutes, which allowed stage winner Frigyes Turán to move into second behind Lukyanuk.

Heavy rain affected much of the early action with conditions proving the most demanding on the penultimate test before service (SS10) after which event organisers cancelled the second pass (SS14) for safety reasons.

Lukyanuk made it through the treacherous stage 10 with the fastest time and the Russian also topped the city stage in Nyíregyháza to take a lead of more than two minutes into the final loop of two stages with Ingram third behind Turan and a comfortable 1m38s ahead of fourth-placed Norbert Herczig, the MOL Racing Team’s four-time national champion, who would go on to claim his first stage win of 2019 on the penultimate test.

After suffering three punctures on Saturday, Herczig’s up-and-down home event ended with yet another deflation on the final stage as heavy rain, thunder and lightning tested the crews still further. He finished fifth in his Volkswagen Polo GTI R5.

As conditions worsened, Ingram came through with a front-right puncture, dropping him out of the podium places and seemingly handing the title to Lukyanuk. Incredibly, Lukyanuk was forced to stop and replace another puncture during the stage, dropping nearly two minutes and a place to second.

This promoted Turán to the lead, but attentions focused on how far down the Sunday leg positions Lukyanuk fell. The Russian could only score two points for being sixth fastest at the end of the leg, which left Ingram champion by a margin of nine points.

Sunday got off to a disappointing beginning for ERC1 Junior champion Filip Mareš, who failed to start SS8 following powersteering issues. The Czech federation-backed star, on the first of two prize drives from ERC promoter Eurosport Events for his championship success, was 6.8s from third starting leg two.

Erstwhile title contender Łukasz Habaj retired before the end of Saturday’s leg following powersteering and suspension issues, a sad end to a very impressive campaign for the Pole, which included winning the season-opening Azores Rallye.

ERC Junior regular Kristóf Klausz went off the road on SS9, while early rally leader Vincze also retired with a technical issue after suffering overheating problems and a puncture in his Korda Racing Team ŠKODA Fabia R5 on Saturday.

The post Turan wins Rally Hungary, Ingram clinches ERC title in final-stage decider appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

Turán celebrates maiden ERC win – by phone!

Sun, 11/10/2019 - 18:06

Frigyes Turán has revealed he found out he’d claimed his maiden event win in the FIA European Rally Championship when he got a phone call from his team with the good news.

Hungarian Turán admitted before the start that he’d be hard pushed to break into the top 10 in the final order due to his lack of familiarity with his ŠKODA Fabia R5, but ended up winning the event when long-term leader Alexey Lukyanuk, who was running behind him on the road, picked up a puncture on the deciding stage of Rally Hungary.

“I was on the way to the service park when I got a call from the team that we finished third, but first,” said Turán. “I could hardly believe it. It took some time to realise it, and to tell you the truth, I was absolutely moved. It is awesome!

“I must admit that first I thought I did not really need that last stage because of the extreme conditions due to the fog. But now I think it was well-needed.

“Overall the race was fantastic, I love these stages, only the rain had some negative impact, but right now I think everything is much more than perfect. We are among those few drivers, who haven’t had any punctures, even if the conditions were really tough. I could not hope this kind of result, it is unbelievable.”

The post Turán celebrates maiden ERC win – by phone! appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

Saintéloc crowned ERC champion team*

Sun, 11/10/2019 - 17:37

The Saintéloc Junior Team has won the FIA European Rally Championship for Teams* thanks to the combined efforts of its Rally Hungary trio, Alexey Lukyanuk, Sean Johnston and Ekaterina Stratieva.

Based in France, the Saintéloc Junior Team also counted on points scored by Sindre Furuseth earlier in the season.

Saintéloc’s winning total over Toksport WRT was nine points, Lukyanuk’s deficit to Toksport pilot Chris Ingram in his ultimately unsuccessful bid to win the ERC Drivers’ title. ACCR Czech Rally Team finished third but arrived in Hungary have already clinched the ERC Nations’ Cup.

*Subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA

The post Saintéloc crowned ERC champion team* appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

Chris Ingram is provisional ERC champion for 2019*

Sun, 11/10/2019 - 16:48

Subject to confirmation of the final results by the FIA, Chris Ingram has taken the coveted regional title for the first time alongside co-driver Ross Whittock in a Toksport-run ŠKODA Fabia R5.

“We've worked so hard to get to this point. This means everything to us, thanks to everyone who has helped us this year,” said Ingram, who scored 141 points compared to the 132 registered by Alexey Lukyanuk.

A full Q&A with the champion and the Rally Hungary leg two report will be issued later this evening.

*Subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA

The post Chris Ingram is provisional ERC champion for 2019* appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

Cais remains on course for ERC3 victory in Hungary

Sun, 11/10/2019 - 13:41

Erik Cais remains in control of the ERC3 class after producing another flawless performance on the final morning of Rally Hungary.

The Czech driver, in an ACCR Czech Rally Team-prepared Ford Fiesta R2T, holds a 6m05.2s lead over Marijan Griebel.

Cais came into the final leg with a five-minute margin over his German rival and extended it by another 51-seconds on the opening stage as Griebel struggled with a lack of wet tyres.

A fresh downpour in SS9 meant that Cais took it relatively carefully as Saturday morning leader Miklós Csomós claimed the stage win.

Condtions were far worse on the next test which allowed Cais to pull away further from Griebel behind.

Csomós then took a popular city stage win in Nyíregyháza to end the loop on a positive note.

After suffering dramas on the opening day – with a crash – Ohran Avciouglu returned in his Peugeot 208 R2. He and co-driver Burçin Korkmaz lie fifth in class, albeit more than 37 minutes off the leader Cais.

The Ladies’ Trophy title battle took a dramatic twist over the course of the morning, as points leader Nabila Tejpar’s run came to an abrupt end of SS10.

The British driver ran wide and hit a tree, rolling over as a result; she and co-driver Hugo Magalhães exited the car uninjured.

 

The post Cais remains on course for ERC3 victory in Hungary appeared first on FIA ERC | European Rally Championship.

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Kalendarz 2019

21-23.03.2019:

Azores Airlines Rallye (Portugalia)

02-04.05.2019

Rally Islas Canarias (Hiszpania)

24-26 05.2019

Rally Liepāja (Łotwa)

28-30.06.2019

Rajd Polski

19-21.07.2019

Rally di Roma Capitale (Włochy)

16-18.08.2019

Barum Czech Rally Zlín (Czechy)

27-29.09.2019:

Cyprus Rally (Cypr)

08-10.11.2019:

Rally Hungary (Węgry)