Team ŠKODA MRF wins International Rally of Queensland

The newly formed team ŠKODA MRF has dominated in the third round of this year’s Asia Pacific Rally Championship (APRC). Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm in a ŠKODA Fabia Super 2000 secured the International Rally of Queensland in Australia by a big margin.

The Finnish duo had an advantage of more than 18 minutes after 21 special stages over their closest competitors. Lappi had already won the initial APRC competition in New Zealand. His team mate Gaurav Gill (India) with his co-pilot Glenn MacNeall (New Zealand), who had won the second round in New Caledonia, were forced to retire on the second day of the rally.

“After my withdrawal in New Caledonia I am very happy that I was able to win here. It is nice that I could secure the win for ŠKODA”, Lappi said.

But the competition was not a given despite the big margin; especially the special stages in the woods which were still slippery on the second day after heavy rainfalls. The utmost concentration was required by all drivers.

ŠKODA Head of Motorsport, Michal Hrabánek, was very satisfied with the performance of his young driver: “This was a good weekend for the team ŠKODA MRF. Esapekka was fast and even more importantly reliable, in spite of the tough conditions.”

The next round will be held from August 23 to 25 in Malaysia. Completely different conditions are expected.

“This will be a big challenge for me”, said Lappi. “I have never driven a rally that technically demanding.”

The second day of the rally was overshadowed by a severe accident that claimed a life. The ŠKODA Motorsport Team expresses their condolences to the family of the victim.

ŠKODA is leading both the drivers’ and the constructors’ championship

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