ERC stars unite for charity ice hockey match

ERC stars unite for charity ice hockey match

03/03/2017 at 17:00Updated 03/03/2017 at 19:22

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FIA European Rally Championship drivers and co-drivers past and present swapped steering wheels and pacenote books for ice hockey sticks at the ninth edition of the annual Autotým Rally Ice Tour 2017, a charity match between rally stars and others connected to the sport from east and west Czech Republic.

Some 5,600 euros was raised for a care home for handicapped youngsters in Vizovice, while additional money gathered was handed to Roman Kresta’s former co-driver Petr Gross, who is continuing to recover from injuries sustained in a crash two years ago. An ice hockey shirt signed by all drivers and co-drivers present was also presented to Gross.

Vladimír Barvík, former Czech championship driver and the main organiser of the event, said: "We hope that this contribution will help Petr's convalescence process and we see him back in normal life soon.”

Roman Kresta, Jan Jelínek, Martin Tureček (co-driver of Roman Odložilík), Igor Norek, Václav Dunovský, Petr Uhel (co-driver of Václav Pech), Tomáš Pospíšilík, Petr Černohorský (co-driver of Jan Černý) were among the drivers and co-drivers taking part. Meanwhile, Jan Kopecký and Pavel Dresler, ERC champions in 2013, were among the special guests and signed autographs and answered questions from fans.

“We are glad to be here and happy we were invited by the organisers,” said Kopecký, pictured centre, who brought along the trophy he won for winning Barum Czech Rally Zlín last season. “We met a beneficiary directly on the ice rink and hope not for the last time. Our big thanks to the organisers for this great support to they handicapped, who really need it.”

The event took place at the Luděk Čajka Stadium in Zlín, where scrutineering for the city’s ERC counter used to be held. Moravia beat Czechia 5-4, while one lucky fan won a high-speed passenger ride ahead of August’s Barum Czech Rally Zlín.

With thanks to Jan Vaskovic.Photo:Jiří Zaňát