Juho Hanninen & Mikko Markkula of Skoda Motorsport (factory team) won the last-but-one race of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge (IRC) to decorate the victory in this year’s Drivers Competition that they had secured at the previous event.
Skoda Motorsport appeared in Scotland thanks to close cooperation with the UK importer of Skoda, and although it was their first-ever appearance at this particular event, the team confirmed their dominance in this year’s IRC (Skoda Motorsport has won both the Drivers and the Manufacturers competitions). The race took place in the surroundings of the Scottish towns of Perth and Stirling, on a typical gravel track with many fast and narrow stretches. That, apparently, was exactly what Hanninen & Markkula needed for winning their third IRC event this year. After making a small mistake in the first special stage, the factory team crew worked their way up to the lead and then cruised to comfortable victory. Norway’s Andreas Mikkelsen (Ford) came second, Scotland’s Kriss Meeke (Peugeot), defending his win of last year, finished third.
Juho Hanninen: “A fantastic end of a fantastic season! The race was not easy, as the track included both dry and very slippery parts, but that was actually what made the whole thing exciting. I am very pleased that we have won here, the car went perfectly again, just like all over this season – we had no technical problem at any of the events, which is incredible! I wish to thank the whole team for perfect support and their hundred-percent commitment, I am very proud of winning the title and having a chance to be part of this team all over this season, and I am saying this on behalf of the whole crew.“
Michal Hrabanek: “First of all, I am pleased that we have represented our brand so well in this important market and met the expectations of our importer (UK). This result is another of many great achievements we have made with the Skoda Fabia Super 2000 this season. Juho Hanninen and Mikko Markkula certainly deserved to win here, and their victory was the best possible way of thanking the whole team for hard work throughout this year.
- Skoda Motorsport