Rally Italia Sardegna: Double for ŠKODA in WRC 2 – Jan Kopecký wins ahead of teammate O.C. Veiby

› Jan Kopecký and co-driver Pavel Dresler (ŠKODA FABIA R5) scored their third WRC 2 win of the season at the FIA World Rally Championship round on Sardinia
› With a stunning performance ŠKODA juniors Ole Christian Veiby and Stig Rune Skjaermœn stormed to second place, moving up to third overall in the WRC 2 standings
› ŠKODA Motorsport boss Michal Hrabánek: “What a fantastic performance from Jan and O.C., now ŠKODA won six out of seven rounds of the WRC 2 category in 2018.”

Alghero, 10 June 2018 – Time to celebrate in the beautiful harbour of Alghero on the Mediterranean island of Sardinia: At Rally Italia Sardegna ŠKODA Motorsport achieved a double victory, in total the sixth WRC 2 win out of seven rounds of the FIA World Rally Championship 2018. Jan Kopecký (CZE) and co-driver Pavel Dresler (CZE) powered their ŠKODA FABIA R5 to their third season victory in the WRC 2 category. ŠKODA juniors Ole Christian “O.C.” Veiby and Stig Rune Skjaermœn (NOR/NOR) finished second after an impressive race to catch up. ŠKODA factory drivers Pontus Tidemand (who as planned was not competing this weekend), Jan Kopecký and O.C. Veiby are now holding the top three positions of the WRC 2 championship standings.

Sun and fun, rain and pain, fog and blue sky, dust and mud: The 2018 Rally Italia Sardegna offered all kind of weather and road conditions for the crews facing 20 stages totalling more than 314 kilometres on the beautiful Mediterranean island. ŠKODA works crew Jan Kopecký (CZE) and Pavel Dresler (CZE) held a comfortable lead of more than three minutes going into the last day of the rally. Their young teammates Ole Christian Veiby and Stig Rune Skjaermœn had recovered from their Friday’s mishap, when they were delayed by a suspension issue. During Saturday they already stormed from eighth to third position with a string of six fastest times. But on the final day of the rally, they clearly wanted more. On the remaining four stages over 42 kilometres, they tried to close a 28.2 second gap to second place in the WRC 2 category.

And “O.C.” Veiby and Stig Rune Skjaermœn launched their attack proper on the first Sunday stage being a full 12 seconds quicker than second placed Hyundai driver Ciamin, closing the gap down to 16.2 seconds! While Jan Kopecký admitted “I am nearly driving around every stone on the track and want to bring my ŠKODA FABIA R5 and the victory home”, Ole Christian Veiby continued his massive attack. On the 6.96 kilometres long 18th stage he was again 11.6 seconds quicker than his rival and reduced the gap to 4.6 seconds. One stage later, Veiby finally managed to conquer second place, eventually bringing it to the finish in Alghero. With this amazing result, he moved into third position of the interim WRC 2 championship standings.

ŠKODA Motorsport boss Michal Hrabánek concluded: “What a fantastic performance from Jan and O.C. alike, which makes me proud and happy! Now we won six out of seven rounds of the WRC 2 category in 2018 and we are on a good way to defend our titles. Concerning the driver’s championship, Pontus and Jan will do the same number of events until the end of the season and will have an equal chance in the title fight – may the best win!”

Final Result Rally Italia Sardegna (WRC 2)

1. Kopecký/Dresler (CZE/CZE), ŠKODA FABIA R5, 3:42:33.3 h
2. Veiby/Skjaermœn (NOR/NOR), ŠKODA FABIA R5, +3:02.6 min.
3. Ciamin/de la Haye (FRA/FRA), Hyundai i20, +3:18.7 min.
4. Andolfi/Scattolin (ITA/ITA), ŠKODA FABIA R5, +6:32.2 min.
5. Pieniazek/Mazur (POL/POL), ŠKODA FABIA R5, +7:11.3 min.

Current championship standings WRC 2 (after 7 of 13 rounds)

1. Tidemand (SWE), ŠKODA, 93 points
2. Kopecký (CZE) ŠKODA, 75 points
3. Veiby (NOR), ŠKODA, 45 points
4. Greensmith (GBR), Ford, 40 points
Pieniazek (POL), ŠKODA, 40 points

Number of the day: 11
At Rally Italia Sardegna, ŠKODA junior O.C. Veiby won eleven out of 20 stages in the WRC 2 category and finished his impressive race in second place behind winner and ŠKODA teammate Jan Kopecký.

The calendar of the 2018 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC 2)

Event /Date
Monte-Carlo 24/01/–28/01/2018
Sweden 15/02/–18/02/2018
Mexico 08/03/–11/03/2018
France 05/04/–08/04/2018
Argentina 26/04/–29/04/2018
Portugal 17/05/–20/05/2018
Italy 07/06/–10/06/2018
Finland 26/07/–29/07/2018
Germany 16/08/–19/08/2018
Turkey 13/09/–16/09/2018
Great Britain 04/10/–07/10/2018
Spain 25/10/–28/10/2018
Australia 15/11/–18/11/2018

Additional info