ERC – Zlin post-event top three driver quotes

Quotes from the top three drivers on Barum Czech Rally Zlín, round six of the 2019 FIA European Rally Championship, appear below.

Barum Czech Rally Zlín, FIA European Rally Championship Round 6 of 8
18 August 2019

Jan Kopecký, ŠKODA Motorsport, first position

Q:
How would you evaluate your performance on this rally?

JK:
This rally was very beautiful for us. We’ve reached our target, which was to win the overall classification, and also the Czech championship. I’m glad that Martin Vlček who crashed on the last stage is okay and in good condition. That is the most important news I’ve heard. I also want to say thanks to all the spectators and all the fans. They were a huge motivation for us. In the beginning it was a close fight with both Russian guys, Alexey and Nikolay. They are really crazy. I’d also like to thank our team for helping us to reach victory.

Q:
Now you’ve won this rally eight times, will you come back to try to win for a ninth time in 2020?

JK:
We will see what happens next year. Still I like the driving so if I have the chance with a good team, then I will come.

Q:
And you’re the Czech champion again?

JK:
I don’t want to be the Czech champion again! I would like to do more European rallies or something like this, but we will see what happens next year.

Q:
It’s been a great day for Czech Republic with Filip Mareš winning the ERC1 Junior title. What do you think of his performance?

JK:
I think he was really great. Also, Chris Ingram did a really great job because Filip has a really great mentor from here, Roman Kresta, so for him I think it’s a small advantage. I hope that next year that these two guys will be a bit more in the front. They will join the Russian guys because they were absolutely amazing.

Filip Mareš, ACCR Czech Rally Team, second position (ERC1 Junior first position)

Q:
What an incredible day for you Filip, how are you feeling?

FM:
For sure, it was a really close battle between me and Chris, so for sure I am now really happy with this result. We are ERC1 Junior champions so it was the result we hoped for. I don’t know what to say more because I am just happy.

Q:
How stressful has this day been?

FM:
For sure it was, but this is what we love in rallying. So, this battle was just amazing. I hope the spectators enjoy this fight as we do. We are the happiest in the finish, so very good weekend for us.

Q:
Two more rallies now in Cyprus and Hungary to prove your talent even more. How good is that?

FM:
It’s fantastic because if I’m right we a chance to be on the podium overall in ERC, which is quite good, and definitely we want to try it.

Q:
How important has the Czech federation been in making you a champion?

FM:
It’s very important for me for my future career. You know, Czech federation has supported me for many years, so it’s important and thanks to this support I am here, I have a possibility to compete here in ERC with this amazing car from Kresta Racing, so it’s important.

Q:
Do you have a set plan for 2020?

FM:
No, now we are the champions in ERC1 Junior which is the most important for me, because probably I will start on the next two rounds of the ERC, which is fantastic because my season would probably stop on this race and after this race. Now we are continuing with ERC championship, so it’s good and we will see what happens next year.

Chris Ingram, Toksport WRT, third position (ERC1 Junior second position)

Q:
It wasn’t the title you’ve worked so hard for but you must be proud?

CI:
Yes, very proud. It’s been an incredible fight, the best fight ever. It’ll just make me a stronger driver. I’ve proven to myself that I’ve got the pace. I’ve been putting too much pressure on myself this season and pushing too hard and we’ve been slower than last year. Until here so I just tried to relax and I was driving like myself again. At times we ran really good pace. So it’s promising.

Q:
It was a very determined drive all weekend…

CI:
It’s been a rubbish year really until now. I’ve been putting way too much pressure on myself, been in a bad place mentally and not driving like me, but I’ve proven to myself here that by relaxing as much as possible we have got the pace, definitely. It’s a shame to miss out on the Juniors and the money because it’s been all about budget this year and that’s why the pressure’s been on so, so much. But we’ve got the speed, so we need to find a way to carry on and fight for the overall title. That’s one of my life ambitions. I need to stay positive and stay focused on that, it’s the only way.

Q:
You’re now leading the overall championship by one point but in need of budget to compete in Cyprus and Hungary. What can you do?

CI:
As soon as we finish the podium, start thinking! The Junior title would have been nice, but it was about the money. It’s about the overall title, but I needed the money, I need to find the money.I’ve got to stay positive. I’m leading the European Rally Championship: I need to find a way to carry on because I don’t have any money. I owe my team a lot of money, but I’ve got to find a way to carry on and win that, because if I win that, this won’t even matter.

*Subject to confirmation of the results by the FIA

ENDS

Source : Fia