Flash news after the finish

20. 8. 2023 - Vojtěch Gargulák, David Štícha

The fifty-second Barum Czech Rally Zlín is behind us. This time, a literally tropical weekend awaited the competition crews in Zlín, which also tested them physically. In the star-studded European competition, it was literally a matter of tenths of a second, but traditionally the domestic crews drove especially well, five of which were among the elite seven. In the end, Jan Kopecký and Jan Hloušek are rejoicing at another victory in the European Championship rankings, the Hungarian Miklós Csomós finished his sensational ride in second place, and the Austrian Simon Wagner completed the podium trio, defending his position from last year. Two championship titles were also decided, Jan Kopecký celebrates the domestic championship, Hayden Paddon was crowned the new European champion despite today's accident.

Jan Kopecký (CZE, Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo, no.18):
„Barum rally was difficult as always. This year it was also due to the weather. I would like to thank a lot to all the fans, who were out there even in this hot temperatures, I hope there were not many collapses because of it. So again, many thanks to the fans, to the whole team and my co-driver Jan. I couldn't make it without him. Many thanks to everyone. Csomos was closing, I always make it dramatic. Driving on Barum rally suits me much more, there's bigger pressure on me when the other driver is just close behind."

Miklós Csomós (HUN, Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo, no. 14):
„Its amazing to be on a podium at Barum Rally. It is very hard rally. Its just amazing, no worst needed, its amazing. My co-driver was fantastic, the car was fantastic all weekend. This is the best result of my career."

Simon Wagner (AUT, Škoda Fabia RS Rally2, no.10):
„It's a great feeling. The competition was really big this year. We have set a target to finish in the top 5. Top 3 made it even more successful. Also the win on the city super stage and power stage. I hope we can build on this performance."

Adam Březík (CZE, Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo, no.21):
"Little was missing, it was exactly the turning and reversing at Semetín. What happened, happened, we must fight with this, but im really happy with 4th place, respectlively 5th place."

Filip Mareš (CZE, Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo, no.9):
"5th place is not that we came for, we want fighting for second place. For us was miricle, that we were fighting for winners row, after my yesterday slow start. We missed third place by a few seconds, of course im upset, but on the other side, race was amazing.
I must learn from my mistakes."

Dominik Stříteský (CZE, Škoda Fabia R5, no.20):
„The feelings are great after today. We raced for seconds, unfortunately we didn't get anything from that, but that's just rally. The guys went really well, Adam, Filip and also Simon. I'm really happy for them, they deserve it!"

Erik Cais (CZE, Škoda Fabia RS Rally2, no.11):
„I have to say big thanks to my team, they prepared our Škoda really well. Also Michelin tyres working fantasticly so we had full confidence to push on them. Also big thanks to my family, friends and fans. Pure happines to be on the stages with spectators all around. Igor also enjoyed our time together in the car. We are little bit dissapointed of course, but still happy."

Efrén Llarena (ESP, Škoda Fabia R5, no.3):
„Amazing feeling. We tried our best, we were absolutely flat out since the beginning. Really comfortable with the car and the team. We were also first with the MRF Tyres team in the team competition. We are happy."

Mathieu Franceschi (FRA, Škoda Fabia RS Rally2, no.7):
„I am feeling exceptionally good, so happy I finished this crazy rally. It was broad experience for us. I hope we can be back in the future."

Simone Tempestini (ROU, Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo, no.15):
„Being in the finish is a good feeling. It is a genuinely nice rally. For us, the first time here with an R5 and the roads here are completely crazy. During the recce we couldn´t imagine the speed we could bring with us to the stages. Without knowing the road, I did little mistakes in the pace notes and sometimes I braked a little early. It's a nice experience and next time we come here I will have much better idea how to approach the stages."

Joshua McErlean (IRL, Hyundai i20 N Rally2, no.12):
„It has been a positive weekend from some aspects, we had good pace this morning but, in the afternoon, we had some problems. That was unfortunate because we were top ten in the standings, which would have been amazing coming here for the first time. It has been cool experience coming here, hopefully we can build on that and move forward. The fans here are really passionate as you can see in the city centre, amazing stages, nice experience."

Timo Schulz (GER, Opel Corsa Rally4, no.33):
„We had fantastic rally here in Czech Republic. It was fast, perfect, we had almost all the best stage times. We are super happy to get this result after the first three rallies on gravel. I have to say a big thanks to Opel motorsport, they helped me a lot, perfect teamwork."

Jaromír Tarabus (CZE, Peugeot 208 Rally4, no.41):
„We still have some pace. In the end we are satisfied. After the first day we wanted to catch Schulz, but the young guys are unbelievably fast. We had a nice drive and showed a lot of speed."

Roberto Dapra (ITA, Peugeot 208 Rally4, no.30):
„We are happy, being here at the finish. Better experience than last time when we crashed. We also took important points on Maior so we are happy. I'm sorry for what happened to Max."

Victor Hansen (SWE, Peugeot 208 Rally4, no.31):
"It's great to finish the rally, we are quite happy the last stage was good, but we missed some pace. In the end, after crashing out last year, we are quite happy."

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