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ERC Newsletter #09/14
Posted by: newsla on Feb 28, 2014 - 06:05 AM
WRC Rally News 2010
ERC Newsletter #09/14

Belgian promise Guillaume Dilley has become the latest driver to sign up for the new-for-2014 FIA ERC Junior Championship, bringing the total number of registrations received so far to 16.


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The 23-year-old achieved success in his homeland in Citroën Racing Trophy events before switching to a Volkswagen Polo GTi for last season’s Belgian championship. He will use a Peugeot 208 R2 for his ERC Junior bid, which begins with the all-gravel SATA Rallye Açores from 15-17 May.

Dilley will also contest the Geko Ypres Rally, Barum Czech Rally Zlín, Rallye International du Valais and Giru di Corsica-Tour de Corse. He said: “I’m determined, passionate and eager to discover ERC Junior.”

Confirmation of Dilley’s entry means that there are now 12 nationalities represented in ERC Junior, which resumes on the Circuit of Ireland Rally from 17-19 April.

The Acropolis Rally’s FIA European Rally Championship counter is already proving a success, with 21 crews signed up ahead of the closing date for entries at the reduced fee.

With the final closing date not until 12 March, several more star performers are set to register, with Nasser Al-Attiyah and Peugeot 208 T16 duo Kevin Abbring and Craig Breen among those also committed to taking part.

Included on the provisional list of entries received so far are ERC round two winner Esapekka Lappi, his factory ŠKODA team-mate Sepp Wiegand, Polish champion Kajetan Kajetanowicz (Ford Fiesta R5, pictured), top Czech trio Jaroslav Orsák, Jaromír Tarabus and Antonín Tlusťák (all Fabia S2000s), plus Peugeot 207 S2000-driving aces Robert Consani and Bruno Magalhães.

The FIA ERC Production Car Cup has attracted several rapid entrants including Martin Hudec, Vitaliy Pushkar and Tibor Erdi, while Ekaterina Stratieva will chase ERC Ladies’ Trophy honours in a Subaru Impreza N15. Meanwhile, ERC 2WD champion Zoltán Bessenyey returns to championship duty in his Honda Civic Type R and will face opposition from Romanian duo Alex Filip (Renault Clio R3) and Simone Tempestini (Citroën DS3 R3T).

The Acropolis Rally is based in Loutraki from 28-30 March and counts as round three of the all-action, 12-round ERC season. Click here for the provisional list of entries received so far.

The famous Ulster TT Races of the late 1920s and early 1930s will be celebrated with the new Ards TT Town Centre Special Stage on the Circuit of Ireland Rally, round four of the FIA European Rally Championship.

Scheduled for the evening of Friday 18 April, the stage – organised in conjunction with Ards Borough Council – will run through Newtownards, which featured on the route of the famous Ards Tourist Trophy Circuit: a 22-kilometre layout that was used between 1928 and1936.

Legendary drivers such as Tazio Nuvolari and Rudi Caracciola took part in the race southeast of Northern Ireland’s capital Belfast, with Caracciola triumphing in 1929 and Nuvolari winning in 1930. Thousands of fans flocked to savour the action and event organisers hope to recreate the electric atmosphere. And to help mark the occasion, a Talbot 105 from the 1930s, owned by local enthusiast Nick Ward, will make a special ‘show’ appearance in Newtownards.

Conway Square in Newtownards will also host a time control that all crews contesting the ERC counter will have to pass through en route to the rally’s opening special stage. The Circuit of Ireland Rally is based in Belfast from 17-19 April. Further information, including the event itinerary, will be published shortly.

The promotion of SATA Rallye Açores, round five of the FIA European Rally Championship, stepped up a gear on Wednesday (26 February) when a new exhibition opened at the João Paulo II Airport in Ponta Delgada airport on the island of São Miguel.

Running from 26 February to 18 May, the promotion, run in collaboration with ANA Airports, features local hero Ricardo Moura’s Mitsubishi Lancer rally car plus full details of the gravel spectacular.

Francisco Coelho (President of SATA Rallye Açores)
Jean-Baptiste Ley (the ERC Co-ordinator) and José Alves (Airport Director)
were among those present at the official opening, which coincides with ERC promoter Eurosport Events’ reconnaissance of the route and special stages that will be broadcast live on Eurosport.

Jaroslav Orsák had his work cut out when he made his first start in this year’s FIA European Rally Championship in Latvia earlier this month.

Not only was Orsák driving his ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000 on Rally Liepāja, but his Orsák Rally Sport team was also responsible for running Martin Hudec’s Mitsubishi Lancer in the ERC Production Car Cup section of the winter event.

While Hudec scored championship points, Rally Liepāja proved frustrating for Orsák who retired shortly after starting stage 11 when his Fabia suffered a broken flywheel.

“It was nice race and we gained lot of experience,” said the Czech driver. “But the result and performance were not so good as we expected.”

Orsák said the changing weather conditions also hampered his performance: “We had a very good set-up for hard frozen gravel, but there was heavy snowfall before the rally. The first stages were very difficult for us and we spent almost all the rally trying different things on the set-up,” he concluded.

Did you know? Rally Liepāja marked Orsák’s first outing in the ERC with former regular co-driver David Šmeidler since last May’s Tour de Corse.

Alex Filip is leaving nothing to chance as he prepares to get his FIA ERC 2WD Championship challenge underway on the Acropolis Rally next month.

The Romanian ace is contesting five rounds of the ERC in 2014 starting with the legendary Greek event. But to ensure he’s in top physical shape, Filip took part in the recent Winter Tri Challenge, a triathlon held at the Olympic Training Camp in Izvorani, near Bucharest.

It’s one of the biggest events of its kind in Romania and Filip was certainly put through his paces: running for six kilometres, riding his MTB Felt Q920 bike for 12 kilometres, before swimming for 500 metres. He completed the event in a time of 1h16m16s, which compared favourably to the winner, a professional athlete, who took 57 minutes.

“My strongest part was on my bike where I’ve managed to have a very good result,” said Filip, who will drive a Renault Clio R3 in the ERC. “I lost a lot of time in the water but I’m very happy with my result. It was good training for me before the start of the season. I will have also some test days before the Acropolis Rally and I can’t wait to race in my first rally outside Romania.”

His FIA ERC Junior Championship campaign might have got off to a troubled start when he crashed out of Rally Liepāja. But ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team star Marijan Griebel from Germany has high hopes for 2014.

Tell us a bit about your career so far?
“Last season I did the German ADAC Opel Rallye Cup. It was really hard competition with 24 cars and many good drivers. We could finish every round in the first three places and I won seven out of eight rallies in the Junior championship so I hope I will have a chance in ERC too.”

What’s your target for 2014?
“I’m really excited to do ERC Junior this year. I will have many new experiences but I will try to achieve a good result.”

And there’s a family connection to your mentor Armin Kremer (pictured right with Griebel)
“My father was his mechanic some years ago and in 1996 when he got his first German championship. I have played PlayStation with Armin for five years so we have known each other for a long time. He has lots of experience that can help me.”

PaddockTalk Perspective

Also in WRC Rally News 2010:

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