Rallycross came late to the historic motor sport party, but interest and participation in historic series is spreading across europe. If Britain’s Retro Rallycross championship, which ran its first events in 2012, is at the forefront of this movement the Czech Trophy for Historic Rallycross Cars has developed into what is probably the most well contested series. It boasts a wide range of interesting cars and a mix of drivers including some of the Czech Republic’s finest rallycross racers.
The first idea for an historic series came from former driver Jindrich Matous. A racer in the late 80s when he drove a Skoda 130, Matous was the winner of Czech Rallycross Trophy in 1986 and ’87. Matous and Jiri Kadlec, who continues to organise the historic trophy, arranged the first race in 2013 at Sedlcany. After a successful weekend it was decided to organise a Czech Trophy for Historic Rallycross Cars in 2014. The initial series contained three categories, up to 1600cc, over 1600cc and four-wheel drive, which remain in place today. Cars cannot be newer than 2001. Usually Historic Trophy events are run alongside the International Czech Rallycross Championship but the series has twice made guest appearances at the German championship’s Lausitzring event.
From the beginning of the series cars and drivers famous in the history of Czech rallycross have taken part. European championship star Pavel Koutny joined the historic series, first with a Fiat X1/9 before progressing to a Skoda 130 (a replica of the Matous car), then a Skoda 130 LR (a replica of Miroslav Sefr’s car) and in 2019 with a Mitsubishi Lancer. Koutny’s brother, Petr, also races in the series with a Ford Escort Cosworth.
Another driver well known from the European Championship is Vaclav Veverka, who started with his Peugeot 106 and won the trophy in 2014. The series also features the legendary Skoda 130 RS with Marek Zeman behind the wheel. One of the most successful drivers in the historic series is Tomas Marchal, the son of former european rallycrosser Jaroslav Marchal. Tomas Marchal has won Czech Trophy in his division three times in row with his Skoda Rapid RH, while his father continues to race in the category at the wheel of a Skoda 130 LR “S”, this a replica of a unique prototype which Skoda built in the 80s for Group B/Group S.
Another former international racer, Jan Machacek continues to race at 71-years of age and drives an Audi Coupe, a replica of the ‘Division One’ Group A car with which he scored points in the 1992 European Championship. Others with European Rallycross Championship experience who have raced in the Historic Trophy include Pavel Novacek, Josef Iro and Miroslav Sykora Junior. The Historic Trophy is also popular with young drivers and beginners who are attracted by lower running costs and entry fees – even though this is not the primary purpose of series. There is a special award for the best young driver in the Historic Trophy who is honoured with the Miroslav Sefr Trophy – named after the legendary Skoda driver who was among the first Czechs to race outside of his home country when that became possible in the late 1980s.
Original text by Petr Sulcik.
Photographs copyright Petr Sulcik/rallycross.cz