Developing a race car: fun but also hard work for the drivers
DDeveloping a new racing car is an extremely difficult task. Especially when building on such a successful car as the existing ŠKODA FABIA Rally2, which was based on the third generation of the production FABIA. The new rally car is derived from the fourth generation FABIA and is designed to exceed the high bar set by the previous model.
The test pilots obviously play a very important role in achieving this goal. The drivers – Jan Kopecký, Andreas Mikkelsen, Kris Meeke and Emil Lindholm – and their navigators – worked on the development of the new ŠKODA FABIA Rally2. These experienced drivers are familiar with existing racing cars from Czech car manufacturers, as well as models from other brands. Experience plays a crucial role in the development of a racing car.
“There are drivers who are very quick but can’t tell you much about the car. We need people like that to really push the car to its limits, but it’s the drivers and crews who can provide effective feedback and agree with the engineers who play the biggest role in development,” says Aleš Rada, technical manager of the race car. coordinator.
This wealth of experience and ability to communicate allows drivers and engineers to work together to fine-tune the car and test it in different conditions. “Also, it is important to remember that we are developing the car for a wide range of customers. Our project has more than 450 cars worldwide and the goal is to make their drivers feel good in the new car. Better than in the existing one,” says Rada. “So sometimes we hire drivers who don’t normally work with us on development,” he adds.