Sport

Chezck celebrates Aussie holiday with rally win

GREAT WIN: Jan Kopecky on his way to first place in the International Rally of Queensland in the Mary Valley. BELOW: Jan Kopecky and navigator.
GREAT WIN: Jan Kopecky on his way to first place in the International Rally of Queensland in the Mary Valley. BELOW: Jan Kopecky and navigator. JEREMY ROGERS PHOTOGRAPHY

EUROPEAN Rally Champion Jan Kopecky celebrated his first visit to Australia with victory in Round 3 of the FIA Asia Pacific Rally Championship on Sunday.

The driver from the Czech Republic brought his Indian-run MRF Skoda Fabia to the finish in the Mary Valley township of Imbil 1.9 seconds ahead of Scott Pedder, in a Renault, after dominating the weekend.

Mazda2 driver Brendan Reeves was third and simultaneously maintained his lead over Pedder in the East Coast Bullbars Australian Rally Championship, which was run concurrently.

Kopecky, this year competing for the first time away from Europe's familiar tarmac road surfaces, mastered the region's gravel forest tracks with apparent ease.

He won six of yesterday's 10 competitive Special Stages and was rarely troubled after teammate and closest rival Gaurav Gill of India crashed on the fourth test. Sunday, Pedder won the three morning stages, but Kopecky put the hammer down to claim the last two stages of 36 kilometres each and clinch a satisfying result.

"We've travelled a long way from home in the Czech Republic to this rally, so it's a special feeling to hear our country's national anthem on the podium," Kopecky said after the event.

"It's great to win and we are now leading the championship - but there are still three rounds to go and I hear the next event in Malaysia can be very difficult.

"The stages here were beautiful and very challenging.

"It's been a great experience for us to be here and hopefully we'll be able to use this for the rest of the season - every kilometre on gravel is valuable to us.

"Today it was incredibly slippery in a few places (after overnight rain), even more than yesterday.

"Because the roads were dry when we did our reconnaissance, they felt quite different today."

Scott Pedder was thrilled to get his two-wheel drive Renault to second place outright and first in the Australian championship section.

"I didn't have much more to throw at it, but we won three stages today (Sunday) and two yesterday, which was pretty good.

"It's fantastic to have two G2 cars (G2 category - Pedder and Reeves) on the podium and prove that Australian rallying is pretty strong."

Event Director Paul Woodward said the rally had been another important success on the Sunshine Coast's major sports events calendar.

"We had good attendances at the weekend forest spectator points in the Mary Valley and an extremely good crowd at our Ceremonial Start at Caloundra's King Beach on Friday night," Mr Woodward said,

"Dedicated television coverage from this weekend, including scenic footage of the Sunshine Coast and Hinterland, will go around Australia and to almost 120 countries.

RESULTS

(Provisional)

1. J Kopecky (CZ)/P Dresler (CZ) Skoda Fabia S2000

2. S Pedder (Aus)/D Moscatt (Aus) Renault Clio R3

3. B Reeves (Aus)/R Gelsomino (Aus) Mazda2

4. M van Tuinen (Aus)/E Kelly (Aus) Subaru Impreza

5. M Pedder (Aus)/C Dowling (Aus) Mitsubishi Lancer

6. J Xu (CN)/S Liu (CN) Skoda Fabia S2000

7. A Masamura (JP)/A Nakagawa (JP) Mitsubishi Lancer

8. T Wilde (Aus)/A McLoughlin (Aus) Renault Clio R3

9. A Coppin (Aus/T Batten (Aus) Citroen DS3 R3

10. M Young (NZ)/M Read (NZ) Proton Satria Neo

Gympie Times

Topics:  mary valley



Facebook bans ads for pregnancy services

Midwife Amanda Bude is having difficulty advertising on Facebook as they continue to ban photos of fully dressed pregnant women. Amanda is pictured working with Haley Hughes, who is 9 months pregnant, on a hypnotherapy birth.

Advertisements with baby-bump photos are being deemed too offensive

MY SAY: So you have a QTAC offer, eh?

UNIVERSITY: Plenty of people don't make it to graduation so it's a good idea to do your homework before starting a course.

Before you accept that QTAC university offer really look into things

Was Pauline Hanson really invited to Trump's party?

Pauline Hanson

One Nation senator Brian Burston will now attend the inauguration

Local Partners

Bushfire threat continues months longer than expected

UNSEASONALLY hot and dry weather has firefighters on alert as dangerous bushfire conditions extend nearly two months longer than usual.


The Amity Affliction's overdue homecoming

BACK IN TOWN: THe Amity Affliction play the Gympie Civic Centre on Friday night.

After 10 years away from Gympie, the local legends are back.

Puppetry of the Penis secrets revealed ahead of show

The famed Puppetry of the Penis is coming to the Sunshine Coast for shows in Noosa and Caloundra.

WARNING: This interview contains adult themes and traces of nuts

What's on in Gympie this weekend and next week for Australia Day?

Check out the Gig Guide for a couple of fun ideas for Australia Day, including a family friendly event at the Jockey Club Hotel.

All the action in Gympie for the Gig Guide this weekend.

No Plan, Bowie's final music EP, released

NEW: Artwork for David Bowie's posthumous 2016 EP, No Plan.

David Bowie's 28th and final album

The Amity Affliction's overdue homecoming

BACK IN TOWN: THe Amity Affliction play the Gympie Civic Centre on Friday night.

After 10 years away from Gympie, the local legends are back.

Married At First Sight: Ipswich bachelor seeks love

READY FOR IT: Ipswich man Simon McQuillan will appear on the upcoming new season of Married At First Sight.

Romance would top off recovery for Booval man

Dinky-di Denyer: Family Feud favourite hosts Oz Day party

Grant Denyer will host Channel 10's Australia Day concert from the Sydney Opera House.

GRANT Denyer shares his Australia Day traditions ahead of concert.

Chelsea Handler blames the Kardashians for Donald Trump win

Chelsea Handler pictured in a scene from her talk show in Los Angeles.

TALK show host blames rise of reality TV family for election result.

Law & Order’s Trump inspired episode is still in limbo

The cast of Law & Order: SVU season 18, from left, Kelli Giddish, Raul Esparza, Mariska Hargitay, Ice-T and Peter Scanavino. Supplied by Channel 10.

SHOW'S mastermind unsure if or when twice-delayed episode will air.

Ipswich block of dirt sells for $582 a square metre

JUST SOLD: A property on the Brookwater golf course sold for a record-breaking $612,000.

Property smashed 2007 record by close to $100,000

Sunday auction for historical home

Former Catholic school sure to attract spirited bidding

Looking back, looking ahead in Noosa

NEVER-ENDING GLORY: Looking towards Laguna Bay and Hastings St from Noosa National Park.

Natural appeal of Noosa continues to attract buyers

Thousands of jobs part of $1b retirement village project

THIS YEAR: An artist impression of the new Aveo retirement village in Springfield.

Aveo Springfield unveiled this month, homes ready by July

KNIFE-EDGE: The housing tightrope we now face

Even the smallest interest rate rise will be hard for some to handle.

One if five home owners at risk, according to new analysis

Ready to SELL your property?

Post Your Ad Here!