Bogdan Talașman increases his lead at the top of Dacia Cup 2015

  • Dacia Cup podium at the end of round VI of 2015, Sibiu Rally Challeng
  • The lead at the top of Dacia cup increases to over 30 points
  • Strategic approach for the end of the season

Arriving in Sibiu as leaders of Dacia Cup 2015, Bogdan Talasman and Andrei Mitrasca agreed over a weighed pace for the following race. The plan included a place on the podium and a race without incidents on the most beautiful road in the world.

Thus, after the first day, crew number 85 were exactly on the desired position and decided to defend their place in the next six stages on Saturday. Although the weather sorely tested the crews, conditions were similar for all competitors and did not favour anyone. Fog made the second descent on Transfagarasan one of the toughest stages in the whole championship. Bogdan kept his concentration, including on the last stage which he also won, managing to maintain his position on the podium and get even closer to the Dacia Cup title.

“We made great efforts to come. I gave up a lot for Sibiu because I fixed what I ruined in Cluj. I wanted more than just to be present, so I fought on the special stages, enough as to not risk going off the track. Transfagarasan is indeed a spectacular road. The atmosphere in the center of Sibiu is also unique and I always leave with nice memories. There still are two more rounds and nothing is settled until we cross the finish line at Harghita, the last rally of this year. „ said Bogdan Talasman at the end of the race.

“Last year I competed for the first time as a rally driver, right here in Sibiu, and it was extraordinary. I didn’t think that last year’s nervous feelings will return but I had an empty stomach throughout the whole weekend. I ran at the Moonlight Run, I climbed again on the podium, I had a correct strategy which worked, so I cannot be anything but pleased.” added Andrei Mitrasca.

After six rallies held in 2015, Bogdan Talasman gathered 108 points at the lead of Dacia Cup, which brings him 30.4 points ahead of Adrian Dragan, who becomes, after Sibiu, the main pursuer in the standings. Next round is Iasi, where crew number 85 will try to keep their advantage and to leave as little as possible in fate’s hands for the last round of this year. In 2015, Bogdan Talasman is supported by Miras, the main partner of the pilot for several seasons. Bogdan and Andrei would like to congratulate the organisers of the Sibiu round for the extraordinary sporting event and they hope it will remain in the calendar for the next years.

Audi TT-RS by MTM opened the road on Transfăgărăşan at Sibiu Rally Challenge 2015

Held between 20-23 August 2015, Sibiu Rally Challenge was a festival of motorsport and included the sixth round of the National Rally Championship, among two other competitions reserved for classic cars and more. The highlights of the weekend certainly were the four rally stages on Transfagarasan, the most famous road in Romania, with Team Devil Motors accepting the challenge to participate in the modern version of the race in Sibiu on board of the Audi TT-RS powered by MTM.

National champions at group N in 2003, Emanuel Ilina and Flavius ​​Câmpeanu, kicked off Sibiu Rally Challenge as forlighters, opening the race for the other crews from the national competition over the eight special stages which summed up to 83 kilometres.

The chosen car was the Audi TT-RS from Devil Motors’s garage, the Romanian representative of German tuner MTM. The famous roadster, produced in 2010 by Quattro GmbH in Neckarsulm division, has a 2.5 liters 5-cylinder engine, which originally had a power of 340 HP and 450 Nm torque, available between 1600-5300 rpm. Following modifications, the engine can now deliver 424 HP at 6,600 rpm, while the torque increased to 560 Nm, with the manual six-speed transmission and permanent full traction. The maximum speed of the car is now 292 km/h and it sprints from 0-100 km/h in only 4.1 seconds.

“I am very glad we decided to participate in Sibiu Rally Challenge. Although I am a fan of gravel rallies, I felt great on the asphalt special stages at Sibiu. Transfăgărăşan is certainly the most spectacular road in Romania and Audi TT-RS by MTM did an excellent job on this road, given the fact that the start was at an altitude of 1,350 meters and the finish was at over 2,000 meters. We were also helped by the performance of Dunlop tires, made available by the Romanian representative of the brand, thus experiencing the race without being nervous! „ said Emanuel Ilina, manager of Devil Motors, the official representative of MTM in Romania.

With an atypical weather for August, Transfăgărăşan greeted the Devil Motors crew with extremely low temperatures on Saturday, rain, fog and very low visibility. Besides the improvement of the engine, the MTM package also included an upgrade to an all-wheel-drive Haldex traction system with an ECU which reached its fourth generation, so the Audi TT-RS by MTM responded very well even in the unfavourable conditions found on Transfăgărăşan. “We met all our objectives at Sibiu Rally Challenge, we completed all the kilometres of the special stages without technical problems and we had fun like we haven’t had in ages!” said  the co-driver, Flavius ​​Câmpeanu.

Devil Motors is the official representative of the German tuner MTM in Romania and performs a wide range of upgrades (especially technical) on all production models of Volkswagen group brands. The most important upgrades consist of software modifications to the engine, brake system, exhaust, etc.

After participating in Sibiu Rally Challenge 2015, Emanuel Ilina, manager of Devil Motors, decided to start an ambitious project of building a rally car based on RS model from Audi’s range. We hope that the audience will enjoy the evolution of Devil Motors crew on the special stages, starting as soon as next season.

Simone Tempestini wins Sibiu Rally Challenge

  • Simone has won seven out of the eight stages scheduled and imposed in the duel with his colleague from Napoca Rally Academy, Bogdan Marișca, while Gergo Szabo climbed on the last step of the podium
  • Bogdan Marisca climbed to second place in the championship standings, with an advance of 0.4 points from Edwin Keleti
  • Raul Badiu won the duel with Sebi Barbu in the two-wheel drive category and secured the title of national champion at this category

Sibiu Rally Challenge, motorsport festival and the sixth round of Dunlop National Rally Championship, ended Saturday night at the end of a day which had as a main attraction the special stages scheduled on the most beautiful road in Romania, Transfăgărăşan. Leading after the first day, Simone Tempestini has won all the stages and achieved his fifth victory this year.

On the second day of Sibiu Rally Challenge, Transfăgărăşan greeted its guests with an atypical weather for August. Extremely low temperatures, slightly above freezing, dense fog and rain. Obviously, in these conditions, the task has become even more difficult for the drivers, as choosing the right tires could have made a difference in the fight for victory. Even more, all the pilots have complained about the lack of visibility in the second downhill on Transfăgărăşan, which affected their performance on the stage.

In terms of sport, on the first loop of day two, Simone Tempestini and Bogdan Marișca, the first two pilots at the end of day one with 2.6 seconds between them, finished all three stages in the same order, in the top of the hierarchy. Simone was able to increase his advance to 24 seconds, but has not lifted his foot from the gas pedal, and ticked the best time on the last three stages, followed by Marișca (PS7) and Szabo (PS6 and PS8). Thus, at the end of a rally where, on the first special stage, only Bogdan stole his chance to have a percentage of 100% “scratch”, the championship leader has won the fifth time this year and his success put him in the absolute top of the hierarchy. “There was a second where I went as we wanted and, as a result, we have achieved the objective we have set in this race – victory. It was not an easy rally, but everything went very well and we are glad we took another step towards the title.” Simone said at the end of the day.

Second place went to Bogdan Marișca, who finished at 56.2 seconds after the winner. Content, Bogdan said at the end: “The route was very competitive and I’m glad everything worked perfectly, I managed to climb next to Simone on the second position in the overall standings of the season.”

If at the end of the first day Raul Badiu and Sebi Barbu, the pilots in dispute for supremacy in the two-wheel drive category, took places 3 and 4 in the overall standings, after only the first stage of the second day the drivers with four-wheel-drive cars proved the superiority of the contest material. Thus Marco Tempestini and Dan Gîrtofan became the pilots who were fighting for the third step of the podium, while Gergo Szabo moved up to 6th place, and was interposed between Badiu and Barbu. One stage later, Szabo took Raul’s place, and it was clear that the battle for the third step of the podium will be between Tempestini Sr, Gîrtofan and Hungarian pilot.

The decisive factor would have been stage number 5, the first pass on „Baraj” special stage. A blown fuse at the demisting system forced the Marco Tempestini to go 4 km blind. “I am unlucky. As long as we had no problems I had a rhythm that made me think that we will repeat the achievement from Transylvania Rally, where we had a full podium with Napoca Rally Academy. Unfortunately, the failure on PS5 and then losing the fourth gear on the transport stage has forced us to settle for less.” said Marco. He only took the 10th place on SS5 and reached an overall 5th place, on which he also finished the race.

Ranked ahead of Gîrtofan, Szabo managed to climb on the 3rd place, which he kept until the end, imposing on Gîrtofan with 17 seconds in advance. Finally, Szabo said: “There were just over 80 kilometers of special stage, but with a lot of challenges, especially because of the weather, making the rally extremely intense. We decided to climb the podium, I managed to make a good choice of tires, the car worked perfectly and we achieved our goal. ”

Edwin Keleti, second place in the overall standings of the season before this race, came in 6th place, with Marișca now 0.4 points ahead in the absolute hierarchy. Keleti left from Sibiu Rally Challenge as the winner of Class 3, category whose podium was also occupied by Rares Tomiță and Horatiu Savu.

Raul Badiu and Sebi Barbu duelled until the end, as mentioned previously, for the two-wheel drive category and 5/6 classes. Barbu, who came with a new car, admitted at the end, with fair play, that his opponent had a superior pace and that the victory was well earned. A victory which, in the context of Adrian Raspopa’s absence, earned Badiu, mathematically, the national title of the category. “He deserves to be champion. But in the future I will try to give our duel a higher pace.” Sebi Barbu said as he entered the service park. Number 3 was ranked Mihai Manole, who was in this competition the fastest of the beginners of Dunlop National Rally Championship.

Vlad Cosma, Alex Ardelean and Radu Necula occupied the top three places in Class 9 and in Suzuki Cup, while Viorel Ivan, Norbert Major and Bogdan Talasman took the podium of the other single brand competition, dedicated to Dacia cars. Finally, in Class 11, Thomas Abraham beat Romulus Preda by 19.5 seconds, while Andrei Pop imposed in Class 15.

In the Challenge competition, Jean Tatu won the category C1, Alex Filip won C2 and Lorincz Borbely won C3.

Sibiu Rally Challenge, a motorsport festival, is scheduled between 20 – 23 of August and includes Sibiu Rally, the sixth round of Dunlop National Rally Championship held under the aegis of the Romanian Motorsport Federation (FRAS). Sibiu Rally Challenge is an event co-financed by the Sibiu City Council and Sibiu City Hall and supported by Orange Romania.

Classic cars race on Transfăgărăşan

  • 30Premiere at Sibiu Rally Challenge: a special competition dedicated to classic cars
  • Sibiu Classic Challenge competitors will arrive at Păltiniş and Transfăgărăşan
  • The competition is dedicated to classic cars manufactured between 1905 – 1985

For the first time, at the 2015 edition of Sibiu Rally Challenge is organized a special competition of classic cars in partnership with Retromobil Club Romania. The competition, a usual one, is divided into two distinct classes: Classic Regularity and Sportive Regularity.

The first edition of Sibiu Classic Challenge, a competition organized in partnership with Retromobil Club Romania, scheduled between 20 – 23 of August during Sibiu Rally Challenge, a festival dedicated to motor sports. For the first time in the history of the event, at the start will also be accepted the classic cars that will compete in two distinct classes: Classic Regularity and Sportive Regularity.

“This is the first time in Romania when the Regularity class is created, category that is already on the rise in countries like France, England and Belgium, which are more advanced in motorsport history than us.
This category will have average speeds imposed above 50 km / h on special stages closed to traffic, providing extra adrenaline for participating crews, while being safe, according with both the FIVA and the FIA rules.
You can sign in historic cars without the need for additional investment in the roll- bar and preparing engines, crew’s only obligation is wearing hellmets during stages with average speed of over 50 km / h. Thus, this category is a particular challenge with a much smaller budget, “said Georgios Ladopoulos, Sport Commission President Retromobil Club Romania (RCR).

Participants in this competition will have the opportunity to discover some of the most beautiful areas of Sibiu and reach the classic specials of the rally: Păltiniş and Transfăgărăşan. Unlike pilots of the National Rally Championship, the Sibiu Classic Challenge participants will learn the rally route only at the start. “The only thing that competitors of Sibiu Classic Challenge will know is that they will reach Păltiniş and Transfăgărăşan special stages. But that’s all. For them, the route is a surprise and they will discover this only after the start, “said Georgios Ladopoulos, Sport Commission President Retromobil Club Romania (RCR).

At the start are allowed only automobile made between 1905 – 1985, which will be divided into seven distinct categories in the two classes. Thus the average speed imposed by Classic Regularity is up to 50 km / h, and the Sport Regularity may be between 50-80 km / h, depending on the specific stage characteristics. “I hope the idea of having classic cars and racing cars on the same special stages will attract a greater number of fans than usual. Sibiu Rally Challenge is a festival dedicated to motor sports and we want to offer spectators a unique show on Transfăgăşan and not only” added Sorin Itu.

Sibiu Classic Challenge is schedueled Thursday, August 20, with the parade and the ceremonial start in the Big Square of Sibiu, on Friday and Saturday, August 21 to 22, will be held under regular special stages.

Register now for Sibiu Rally Challenge

  • Four distinct categories in 2015: Sibiu Rally, Sibiu Classic Challenge, Sibiu Rally Challenge and Sibiu Rally Legends
  • Registrations are open and are made online until August the 14th
  • The competition is schedueled between 20 – 23 of August
  • Registration for the Sibiu Rally Challenge , a festival dedicated to motor sports scheduled between 20 – 23 of August , began a month before the official start . At the 2015 edition there are 4 categories: Sibiu Rally, Sibiu Classic Challenge, Sibiu Rally Challenge și Sibiu Rally Legends

In 2015, Sibiu Rally Challenge includes not only one stage in the National Rally Championship but the idea that started last year which continues to attract a large number of enthusiasts to start. “We want to attract veterans of this sport, young rally drivers with limited financial possibilities, but also classic cars that have written the history of this sport.” said Sorin Itu, the organizer of the event.

Sibiu Rally is the sixth stage of the National Rally Championship and will take a route with a length of 82.74 km consists of 8 stages: The first day will go through Păltiniș and Vălari special stages, the last stage by night and the second day will certainly be the main attraction: the famous Transfăgărăşan that will be followed by four times: 2 stages uphill and 2 stages downhill, plus a completely new special stage with a length of 10.5 km.

Sibiu Classic Challenge is a competition open to classic cars regularly organized in partnership with Retromobil Club Romania, and has two categories: Classic and Sport. Participants in the competition will have the opportunity to discover some of the most beautiful areas of Sibiu and reach the rally and the classic specials: Păltiniș and Transfăgărăşan.

Sibiu Rally Challenge is an open category to all rally drivers holding a competition car, designed especially for the rally drivers of National Speed Championship in Coast, but not only, which will go only part of the route, including the specials Păltiniș and Transfăgărăşan the most important stages of the event. Sibiu Rally Legends is an open section for the race cars that made history over time on special stages and will run on the same route as the stage of the National Championship. “The main objective is to attract as many spectators in the key points of the event: Piața Mare in Sibiu, Păltiniș and Transfăgărăşan. Then we want to offer all rally drivers a framework in which to compete regardless of budget that they have available and create a festival dedicated to motor sport to grow every year and increasingly attract important names” Sorin Itu added.

Sibiu Rally Challenge 2015 begins online

A new website, social media campaigns and the involvement of the fans in the creation of content. The 2015 edition of Sibiu Rally Challenge began online, one

The 2015 edition of  Sibiu Rally Challenge, a motorsport festival, taking place in Sibiu between the 20 and 23rd  of August, the action will be seen in the most spectacular event locations – Piaţa Mare of Sibiu, the special stage of  Păltiniş by night or Transfăgărăşan, but also through the communication channels of social media platforms of the official competition.

One month before the festive start, a new website – www.raliulsibiului.ro – was launched, which contains useful information for participants, media, and especially for those who will come at the rally and for those who will watch this event online. The official website – www.raliulsibiului.ro – remains the main source of information, here will be available information about participating crews, competition, maps of the special stages and live results from each particular stage.

Information about Sibiu Rally Challenge  will also be available on the main social platforms: Facebook, Twitter, YouTube, Pinterest and Instagram. The new website – www.raliulsibiului.ro – includes all these social platforms and it is an ideal interface between fans and the action during Sibiu Rally Challenge. To group all the information on the Sibiu Rally Challenge, the official hashtag on the social platforms is #sibiurally. During the event there will be many activities in order to involve fans in the conduct of the competition, allowing them to vote for the most spectacular driver or the most beautiful car.

The access for all supporters from the online platforms is provided by partnering with Orange Romania, which offers free wireless internet in the Big Square of Sibiu. In addition, the partnership with Zelist Monitor we will install a monitor in the Big Square, which will activate a “live – wall” that will aggregate all mentions about the event to see in real time what is being discussed about Sibiu Rally Challenge.

When Jarkko Miettinen won Sibiu Rally…

There were nine dirivers that triumphed in Sibiu Rally from 2001. In 2008 and 2009, on the toughest gravel stages in Romania, triumphed a Finnish. Jarkko Miettinen won Sibiu Rally with Mikko Luka, his copilot, on Mitsubishi Lancer EVO IX, in the first participation in 2008 and repeated this performance a year later.

Jarkko, how much do you remember about the Sibiu Rally?
Jarkko Miettinen: I have good memories from Sibiu as a city and also I liked the rally. It was always great weather and lot´s of spectators.

Was it a tough event back then?
Jarkko Miettinen: Yes it was quite rough! I remember that we were a bit shocked on the first time when we saw some sections with all the stones and holes on the road. I think our Recce car did not like it too much.. Then in the race it felt better with race car, but it was difficult to estimate correct speed for those bad sections.

What was your favorite stage?
Jarkko Miettinen: I don’t remember the name, but it was the long stage where you go first up the mountain for a 10-15km and then down the last 10 km. Very demanding with all kind of corners and last downhill section really difficult, narrow, bumby but still suprsingly fast. It was like last or second last stage of the rally and you knew anything can happen but you cannot take it too carefully.
I also enjoyed always the Super special stage near city at Rally cross track. There was great feeling with a lot of fans!

What was the biggest challenge for you?
Jarkko Miettinen: To understand how to drive slowly enough when road was rough and when to go flat out.

First Sibiu Rally was in 2008 and you won it. How do you manage it?
Jarkko Miettinen: Like mentioned before, we planned very carefully where to drive full speed and where to drive carefully and avoid biggest stones and holes. I think we where able to follow this plan because we had enough speed at good sections to have some gap to go really slowly when needed. I think we had good pace notes and we put a lot of information about bad stones and lines we should follow to avoid getting in problems.

You’ve repeated the success story one year later. How important was this win for you?
Jarkko Miettinen: It was important of course to show that we were not only lucky on the first year. Also we had a lot of issues with our car in 2009 so it was always nice to finish with good result for the team.

Everyone said that Sibiu Rally was the toughest gravel rally. What do you think about this rally?
Jarkko Miettinen: I have good memories of course, but I undertstand some complaints about the condition of the route. Anyway, I think most of gravel rallyes in Romania had rough and tough sections.

Do you remember if punctures where an issue for you in Sibiu?
Jarkko Miettinen: We did have some puncture at least on the first year, most likely from the rear. We also had suspension failure, arms bent and some normal wear out of car but no major problems.

If you can choose a car for Sibiu Rally on gravel, what would you choose?
Jarkko Miettinen: Of course it should be a real rally car and not group N4 like we had. I would like to start it with new Skoda R5…or actually why not with VW Polo WRC!

In 2015, Sibiu Rally will be completely on tarmac. What do you prefer: gravel or tarmac?
Jarkko Miettinen:
I liked tarmac events also in Romania. If gravel roads are in very bad condition at this area, I think tarmac option is good for competitors as car stays in better condition and hopefully there are more participants then.

The most famous Romanian road, Transfagarasan, is part of the route. Do you know something about this road?
Jarkko Miettinen: Have you seen it during your Romanian rally seasons?We totally missed this road when we were at Romania! Nobody told about it for us and I guess Top Gear came only later to make a program about it? Afterwards I´ve seen some footage and it looks great and enjoyable.

Would you like to start once again in Sibiu Rally?
Jarkko Miettinen: Yes of course!

What does Jarkko Miettinen know?
Jarkko Miettinen: I still work with rally driving with our Rally School company Rally Promotion Finland. We have customers around the world and now it starts to be busy with forthcoming Rally Finland. I also do winter driving experience events for BMW Finland in the Lapland so I am very happy for my career at the moment.

Sibiu Rally Challenge, a motorsport festival, is scheduled bewteen 20 – 23 of August and includes Sibiu Rally, the sixth round of the Dunlop National Rally Championship held under the aegis of the Romanian Federation of Motor Sport (FRAS). Sibiu Rally Challenge is an event co-financed by the Sibiu City Council and Sibiu City Hall and supported by Orange Romania.

When Edwin Keleti won Sibiu Rally Challenge…

There were nine drivers since 2001, who triumphed at Sibiu Rally. In 2014, when Sibiu Rally was not included in the National Rally Championship, Edwin Keleti won, with a Ford Fiesta, at Sibiu Rally Challenge, a competition organized on tarmac, that included for the first time Transfăgărăşan in this rally, as a special stage of Sibiu area.

Edwin, you’re the first winner of Sibiu Rally on tarmac. How was the experience of 2014 for you?
Edwin Keleti:
It was a very intense experience and maximum pleasure! Intense because both, the famous Transfăgărăşan and my number 1 opponent, former world champion in N Group – Manfred Stohl, couldn’t be easily “tamed”! Anyway, it was a privilege to race that sensational road!

Your best result on tarmac was in 2012, when Sibiu Rally was an IRC stage. How was it back then?
Edwin Keleti: I remember it was a race where I chose a pragmatic approach, a tactical one, and I got the reaward in the end, at the closed park! It was an extremely difficult rally, a manly one, a real struggle of the athletes and of the rally cars with nature. I am very proud of the result I achieved then, with a group N car.

A part of the route used in the 2014 edition, which did not count as a stage in the National Championship will be used in 2015. How do you think this year’s edition will be?
Edwin Keleti: I am sure it will be a hotly disputed edition because both the route and the ambiance are very inspiring. Besides that, it is a fierce battle in the championship this season as well. I can’t wait to measure up with the other competitors.

Transfăgărăşan on tarmac or Şanta on gravel?
Edwin Keleti: Although I am a pilot who’s balance of passion tends to lean towards the gravel, I think I would choose Transfăgărăşan, with the condition of being on board of an efficient car, like S2000 or R5.

Which is your favourite special stage of Sibiu Rally and why?
Edwin Keleti:
From the gravel category Dobârca would be the one, and of all the tarmac stages I am convinced that Transfăgărăşan, will remain my favourite.

Of all those who won Sibiu Rally over time you are the only one who drove a 2WD car. How was it?
Edwin Keleti:
Yes, I competed 3 times with front wheel drive cars: Dacia Logan, Clio RS and Clio R3 Maxi Evo. You know, you can go fast even with a Logan, especially in the valley areas  where I usually overcame cars  like Citroen C2 R2, but it’s also true that in the first two years I had a bunch of problems. It was only in 2010 that I “broke the ice” and won at the – 2WD – category.

Which car did you like most to compete with at Sibiu rally? 
Edwin Keleti: Among those I ran with, Mitsubishi Evo X.

If you could choose, in which car would you like to take off once more at Sibiu Rally on gravel
Edwin Keleti: A WRC, of course!

What was the main challenge of Sibiu Rally on gravel?
Edwin Keleti: The endurance and the pilot’s ability to combine great speed with car conservation.

From 1 to 10 how would you grade the hardness of the route?
Edwin Keleti: all 10 straight, but Dobârca.

Do you still remember how many punctures you had?
Edwin Keleti: Almost one every year…

The best moment for you at Sibiu Rally?
Edwin Keleti: In 2013, when being on the 3rd place overall after the first day , the guys from Eurosport knocked at my window and asked me if they can install some video equipment for recording and reporting on our car !!!

The worst moment at Sibiu Rally?
Edwin Keleti: Clearly the technical abandonment in 2013, with a special stage before the final when I was in great fight with former Group N world champion, Toshi Arai, for the 3rd place overall and the 2nd in N group!

In 2015 Sibiu Rally changed completely. It will be on tarmac and Transfăgărăşan, the most spectacular road in Romania, was included in the program. How do you like the change?
Edwin Keleti: Nostalgic because I’m gonna Şanta by night and its extraordinary ambiance, but I hope it is a new beginning for Sibiu Rally!

What is your goal for this year’s edition?
Edwin Keleti:
Objective stated: VICTORY!

Sibiu Rally Challenge, a motorsport festival, is scheduled bewteen 20 – 23 of August and includes Sibiu Rally, the sixth round of the Dunlop National Rally Championship held under the aegis of the Romanian Federation of Motor Sport (FRAS). Sibiu Rally Challenge is an event co-financed by the Sibiu City Council and Sibiu City Hall and supported by Orange Romania.

When Jan Kopecky won Sibiu Rally…

There were nine drivers from 2001 that triumphed at Sibiu Rally. In 2013, when Sibiu Rally was a round in the European Rally Championship (ERC), the czech driver Jan Kopecky won, who competed in a Fabia S2000 with co-driver Pavel Dresler. This victory helped him to win the European title in 2013.

Jan, how much do you remember about the city of Sibiu?
Jan Kopecky: Very beautiful city with many great places to see and to go. And for sure nice people!

For you the first and only Sibiu Rally was in 2013 and you won it. How do you manage it?
Jan Kopecky: We had a really strong car for that – Škoda Fabia Super 2000 and we did not have any troubles, we were driving without any mistakes and hopefully quite fast also – that was the key to win Sibiu Rally.

The rally was part of the ERC. How important was this win for you in 2013?
Jan Kopecky: It was really important result for us on the way to win whole Championship and win in Sibiu helped us a lot!

What was your favorite stage?
Jan Kopecky: It was definitely the stage Crinti – long stage and very rough with various sections inside, some places slow, some places very fast and some places very narrow.

What was the biggest challenge for you?
Jan Kopecky: Not to make a mistake and not to brake the car because some parts were really rough and you had to use your head where to push for maximum and were not.

Everyone said that Sibiu Rally was the toughest gravel rally. What do you think about this rally?
Jan Kopecky: As I already mentioned – very rough and hot rally with temperatures around 30 degrees.

Do you remember if punctures where an issue for you in Sibiu?
Jan Kopecky: Not for us we were able to manage the rally without any puncture.

If you can choose a car for Sibiu Rally on gravel, what would you choose?
Jan Kopecky: Now days the choice would be very easy – brand new Škoda Fabia R5!

Best memory from Sibiu Rally?
Jan Kopecky: For sure the winning of the rally!

Worst memory?
Jan Kopecky: I do not have any bad memories from Sibiu – all went perfect.

In 2015, Sibiu Rally will be completely on tarmac. What do you prefer: gravel or tarmac?
Jan Kopecky: I like both surfaces but more familiar to me is the tarmac because I have grown up on tarmac here in the Czech Republic – unfortunately we do not have any gravel rallies.

The most famous Romanian road, Transfagarasan, is part of the route. Do you know something about this road? Have you seen it during your visit in Sibiu?
Jan Kopecky: This will be huge challenge for everyone because I spent 2 days on Transfagarasan route after the rally – we had PR activities there with Škoda Octavia RS.

Would you like to start once again in Sibiu Rally in the future?
Jan Kopecky: For sure!

Sibiu Rally Challenge, a motorsport festival, is scheduled bewteen 20 – 23 of August and includes Sibiu Rally, the sixth round of the Dunlop National Rally Championship held under the aegis of the Romanian Federation of Motor Sport (FRAS). Sibiu Rally Challenge is an event co-financed by the Sibiu City Council and Sibiu City Hall and supported by Orange Romania.

When Andreas Mikkelsen won Sibiu Rally

There were nine pilots from 2001 that triumphed in Sibiu Rally. In 2012, the norwegian Andreas Mikkelsen, the reigning champion of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC), was on the Sibiu Rally start list and managed to win with a Skoda Fabia S2000, which earned another victory in IRC season finale title. Andreas Mikkelsen and Ola Floene, co-driver, are now in the Volkswagen Team competing in the World Rally Championship.

Andreas, how much do you remember about the city of Sibiu?
Andreas Mikkelsen: Lovely city, great atmosphere, nice people.

For you the first and only Sibiu Rally was in 2012 and you won it. How do you manage it?
Andreas Mikkelsen: With the rough stages, you only had to be fast and still maintain the car and tyres.

The rally was part of the IRC. How important was this win for you in 2012?
Andreas Mikkelsen: Every win is important, and with this a secured my lead in the IRC.

What was your favorite stage?
Andreas Mikkelsen: Stage 7 Santa was a fantastic stage, people with fires where surrounding it! I do remember stage 7 Santa. That must be my favourite!

What was the biggest challenge for you?
Andreas Mikkelsen: The rough roads!

Everyone said that Sibiu Rally was the toughest gravel rally. What do you think about this rally?
Andreas Mikkelsen: For sure, this must have been the roughest one in the IRC!

Do you remember if punctures where an issue for you in Sibiu?
Andreas Mikkelsen: No, I can not remember any punctures! So with the rough roads, I must have managed the tyres well!

If you can choose a car for Sibiu Rally on gravel, what would you choose?
Andreas Mikkelsen: Volkswagen POLO!

Best memory from Sibiu Rally?
Andreas Mikkelsen: Victory in a beautiful place!

Worst memory?
Andreas Mikkelsen: No worse memory!

In 2015, Sibiu Rally will be completely on tarmac. What do you prefer: gravel or tarmac?
Andreas Mikkelsen: It doesn’t really matter to me, I’m enjoying every surface. Including snow!

The most famous Romanian road, Transfagarasan, is part of the route. Do you know something about this road? Have you seen it during your visit in Sibiu?
Andreas Mikkelsen: I have heard of that road and it looks like a proper Norwegian mountain road! Stunning scenery, awesome for rallying!

Would you like to start once again in Sibiu Rally in the future?
Andreas Mikkelsen: Yes, of course! I will always like to go back!!

Sibiu Rally Challenge, a motorsport festival, is scheduled bewteen 20 – 23 of August and includes Sibiu Rally, the sixth round of the Dunlop National Rally Championship held under the aegis of the Romanian Federation of Motor Sport (FRAS). Sibiu Rally Challenge is an event co-financed by the Sibiu City Council and Sibiu City Hall and supported by Orange Romania.