Kopecky kicks off ERC Zlin win defence by topping Qualifying
Reigning four-time Barum Czech Rally Zlín winner Jan Kopecký (ŠKODA Motorsport) began his home round of the FIA European Rally Championship on top, going fastest on Friday’s Qualifying Stage.
2013 ERC champion Kopecký was made to work hard for fastest time by reigning ERC1 Junior champion Nikolay Gryazin (Sports Racing Technologies), who clocked in only 0.075s behind.
Overall ERC points leader Alexey Lukyanuk survived an off into a ditch during free practice to go third fastest on the Qualifying Stage, 1.118s off second-placed Gryazin.
Filip Mareš (ACCR Czech Rally Team) has taken the first scalp in his ERC1 Junior title battle with Toksport WRT’s Chris Ingram, going fourth quickest despite running wide at one corner that cost him “maybe one second”.
Ingram meanwhile only managed P13 and will be amongst the last drivers to choose their road order position later today. With mud often kicked up from frequent corner cutting, a higher road order is often of benefit in Zlín to avoid the most slippery conditions.