*Fresh from his first victory on gravel, youngster gets set for home European round
*ŠKODA Polska Motorsport driver registered for ERC Junior U28 points
*Marczyk: “It’s a big pleasure to start in the European championship”
Miko Marczyk will continue his rapid rise in rallying by chasing FIA ERC Junior Under 28 points on his home round of the European championship, the PZM 75th Rally Poland, which begins with the first of 15 stages in host town Mikołajki on Friday evening (21 September).
In only his third season of rallying, the former amateur karter heads the ŠKODA Polska Motorsport attack as the firm returns to the sport following a seven-year break.
Despite his lack of experience, Marczyk won the Polish championship-counting Rally Elektrėnai in Lithuania earlier this month on what was his first proper gravel event. Now the university graduate is preparing for this FIA European Rally Championship debut in the Fabia R5 he shares with co-driver Szymon Gospodarczyk.
“This is a big pleasure for me to start in the European championship, but at the moment my gravel experience is small,” said the 22-year-old. “I was driving my first gravel event one week ago. Of course it was a big success for us but I still need to improve my driving on gravel.”
He continued: “It’s great to be in the same group as Nikolay Gryazin, Chris Ingram and Fabian Kreim. They are really fast and I keep my fingers crossed for their success. I don’t think I am a good competitor for them for now, but maybe next year it’s a different story. I will be happy if we drive a clean rally with good pace and be on the finish. It’s also necessary for me to score some points in Polish championship.''
Marczyk was a virtual unknown when he joined the Subaru Poland Rally Team for 2017, while ŠKODA Polska Motorsport’s decision to sign him for 2018 was firmly in keeping with its policy of supporting young drivers aiming to prove their talent. “After seven years ŠKODA came back to the Polish championship and decided to work with a young driver with promise they could develop,” Marczyk explained. “We’ve had a medium season with some good moments. Now I want to finish with some points and without problems. If things go as I hope, we will make a quite good score.”
ŠKODA Polska is not the only ŠKODA importer supporting drivers in the ERC: ŠKODA AUTO Deutschland is backing Fabian Kreim – who heads ERC Junior Under 28 – while ŠKODA Slovakia was behind Martin Koči’s ERC Junior U28 debut earlier this season.
“ERC Junior U28 is the category for young stars in R5 cars and Miko certainly ticks those boxes,” said ERC Co-ordinator Jean-Baptste Ley. “With the support of ŠKODA Polska, Miko is a real hope for the future. It would be great if this could be the first of a number of appearances in the ERC.”
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