Sun 03 Mar 2024

Moments that made ERC 2023 great: Schulz stuns in Zlín

Timo Schulz made it four different winners in the 2023 Hankook-equipped FIA Junior ERC Championship with a sensational breakthrough triumph on Barum Czech Rally Zlín last August.

Driving an Opel Corsa Rally4 for the ADAC Opel Rally Junior Team, Schulz took the lead on stage two, went unbeaten throughout the opening day in terms of stage wins, then calmy managed his overnight advantage to the finish.  

With Michael Wenzel co-driving, Schulz came home with a winning margin of 1min 15.2sec over Austrian Fabian Zeiringer, with Robert Daprà completing the podium after the ACI Team Italia driver battled back from brake issues on leg one and a powersteering fault this morning.

“We are just super-happy to take the victory here after all the problems we had in the first three rallies of the year,” said Schulz, who scored his first Junior ERC podium on the previous round Rome. “Now the season is really good for us with P2 in Rome and the perfect rally here. I have to say thanks to Opel Motorsport. They are so behind me, trusting me and helping me with everything. It’s the perfect teamwork.”  

Having won six of the seven stages on leg one, Schulz bagged four more fastest times on leg two to underline his dominance.   

Although he didn’t quite register a stage win, ex-ski racer Zeiringer’s capture of second place in another Opel Corsa marked his best Junior ERC finish to date.

“The goal before the weekend was around top five so second place is awesome but the maximum we could get this weekend because Timo was just on another level,” Zeiringer said. “I feel sorry for Max [McRae] because it would have been a great battle with him on the final stage.”  

Max McRae had been second with two stages to go but a broken wheel on the penultimate stage forced the Scot to retire. The Racing Factory driver’s misfortune promoted Zeiringer into second and Daprà to third.   

Drivers planning to contest the 2024 Junior ERC Championship must be younger than 27 on 1 January, compete in a Rally4 or Rally5 category car, register for the FIA ERC4 Championship, and also complete the WRC Promoter GmbH Junior Driver Agreement, which is available here:

Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM