Sweden : CRT Kopecky - Finnish
In the challenging winter conditions of the Swedish Rally, Jan Kopecky and Filip Schovánek earned the Czech Rally Team Kopecky a valuable tenth place.
The Swedish Rally is traditionally packed with drivers from Nordic countries, who
have immense experience of this event and often pick out the Swedish Rally as their speciality in the world championship events. This means it is very difficult for drivers from other climes to make their market in this rally.
Jan and Filip entered Sunday's leg with the task of successfully rounding off their promising progress in the event; Saturday was a particularly food day for the crew of the Czech Rally Team Kopecky. Their final standing of tenth place is the best result achieved by Jan Kopecky in the Swedish Rally. Jan Kopecky, sponsored by Skoda Auto a.s., even had ninth place in his sights, but in the end fell short by just 5.5 seconds.
"I'm happy with the performance and the times we clocked up in the Swedish Rally. Jan recorded steadily improving performance throughout the stages. In particular, he managed to avoid driver errors, which is worth double in an event with conditions as specific as here.
On Saturday and Sunday, the temperatures were about minus twenty degrees centigrade, but our Skoda Fabia WRC handled like a dream despite the freezing weather, and Jan and Filip were quick to praise the car today.
All members of the Czech Rally Team Kopecky, who helped prepare the car so perfectly in the service zone, played a major role in the final result.
During the Swedish Rally, we gained a lot of valuable information concerning vehicle settings in such an event, and we would like to put this to good use in the Norwegian Rally next weekend," said Josef Kopecky at the end of the Swedish Rally.
"The Swedish is a fantastic event. It's such a challenge, but breathtaking at the same time. It was a great battle with Mats Ostberg throughout much of the competition, and unfortunately he edged us by just 5.5 seconds. Because of the length of this rally, I will have to go over every detail which affected this duel so that next time we are the ones who end up on top.
Today's leg was different from those before it because most of the stages involved gravel, which caused severe tyre damage. All the drivers had problems today as the studs came off their tyres. Not only today, but the whole of the Swedish Rally was a major learning experience for me, and I would like to thank our partners, and especially Skoda Auto a.s., for making our participation in the Swedish Rally possible," added Jan Kopecky at the end of the Swedish Rally.
"This year we tried to use our notes from last year's event, but because of the large number of changes we made to the route description, we soon decided it would be better to start from scratch. Also, because the way we tackle the Swedish Rally is developing and speeding up, we need to describe the stages differently. There were fewer braking points and the turns weren't as sharp this year in the Swedish Rally as they were last year," said Filip Schovánek.