2015 ERC attracts 127 registrations
The 2015 FIA European Rally Championship attracted 127 registered entries this year – far exceeding even the expectations of series promoter Eurosport Events. 26 countries were represented, with the most number of drivers, 18, coming from the Czech Republic. There were 14 drivers from Portugal, 13 from Belgium and 10 from both Estonia and Poland. The countries which hosted rounds of the ERC were well represented, but so too where other countries who did not – with six drivers coming from both Russia and Hungary, for example. All the Baltic States, Scandinavia and the main central and east European countries were well represented too. The main ERC titles were well distributed across Europe. Kajetan Kajetanowicz (Poland) won the overall ERC1 drivers’ title, Dávid Botka (Hungary) won ERC2, Emil Bergkvist (Sweden) won ERC3 and ERC Junior and Ekaterina Stratieva (Bulgaria) retained her ERC Ladies’ Trophy title. Kajetanowicz won the ERC Ice and Gravel Master awards, while Craig Breen (Ireland) claimed the ERC Asphalt Master title. In terms of class breakdown, 59 drivers were registered for ERC1, 21 for ERC2 and 47 for ERC3 – 27 of which were ERC Junior entries.
Paris to host gala Eurosport Events Motorsport Awards
The gala prizegiving for the 2015 FIA European Rally Championship will take place in Paris on the evening of 3 December, during what will be a spectacular Eurosport Events Motorsport Awards ceremony. Held at the Paris Motorcycle Show in Porte de Versailles, the glittering ceremony will gather together for the very first time all four Eurosport Events promoted motorsport championships. As this is both four-wheel (ERC, WTCC and ETCC) and two-wheel (EWC – Endurance World Championship) motorsport, the Presidents of both the FIA and FIM motorsport federations will be in attendance.
230,000 Euros awarded to ERC privateers in 2015
A massive 230,000 Euros was given away in prize money during the 2015 FIA European Rally Championship in the form of ERC privateer prize money. 20,000 Euros was given to the top-seven privately-entered drivers on nine of the rounds, while the prize fund was increased to 50,000 Euros to help celebrate the Golden Anniversary of the running of the SATA Rallye Açores – when the top three privateer ERC Junior finishers also shared 12,000 Euros. To be eligible, drivers needed to have registered for the ERC, received no manufacturer support, used tyres from one of the three ERC partner companies (Michelin, Pirelli and Yokohama) and not competed in a Regional Rally Car. A total of 38 different drivers won privateer prize money in 2015.
Young Russian raises ERC eyebrows on Fabia R5 debut
FIA European Rally Championship newcomer, 18-year old Nikolay Gryazin, raised more than a few eyebrows when he finished a superb sixth on the recent Rallye International du Valais, with an outstanding performance in the ŠKODA Baltic Motorsport Fabia R5. The Russian teenager lost a minute with a front right puncture on SS2, but set extremely good stage times over the next two days to climb up the leaderboard. “It was really a hard rally, and I was very happy to be at the finish,” said Gryazin. “We have a big gap of speed but we will change this. I would like to thank the organisation and all spectators. I am really happy, it was very good.”