Hołowczyc wins LOTTO Baja Poland

For the second time in a row and fifth in his career Krzysztof Hołowczyc (MINI 4All Racing) won LOTTO Baja Poland, eight round of this year's FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies. LOTTO Rally Team driver took the rally lead during the first running of nearly 150-kilometer long stage held at the military training ground in Drawsko Pomorskie. Overall, Hołowczyc together with his co- driver Łukasz Kurzeja, has won two out of five stages of the rally. Second place went to Nasser Al-Attiyah (also in a MINI), who extended his lead in the FIA World Cup. The podium was completed by a Dutch-Belgian pairing of Bernhard Ten Brinke and Tom Colsoul (Toyota Hilux Overdrive). After the rally come to an end Hołowczyc announced his retirement from cross-country rallying after a decade-long career highlighted by a Dakar podium finish earlier this year.

Final act of the rally, second running of the stage “Dobra” located by the rally park in Szczecin, was interrupted by a downpour. However the weather didn't have any impact on the front-runners. Hołowczyc, chasing his fifth victory in the rally, drove preservative being 20 second slower compared to his own time from the first running of the stage. The Pole, despite being 23 second slower than the Qatari at the final stage of the rally, won comfortably with over 7-minute advantage. Third driver of the rally Bernhard Ten Brinke won the first running of “Dobra” test. Making his comeback after a back injury Martin Kaczmarski, ended-up just outside the podium. Former motorcycle rider Marek Dąbrowski (Toyota Hilux Overdrive) finished fifth, ahead of another two-wheel specialist Jakub Przygoński (MINI All4 Racing) who was making his off-road car debut. Further places went to Adam Małysz (MINI All4 Racing), Miroslav Zapletal (H3 Evo) and Paweł Molgo (Toyota Hilux Overdrive).

In the T2 category Jarosław Kazberuk and Robin Szustkowski (Ford Raptor), representing LOTTO School of Champions, had an impressive run, taking the lead after the first running of the stage “Poligon Drawsko”. On Sunday the duo, due to a technical failure, lost their T2-category lead, however they were fastest on the final test. Eventually the victory in T2 went to Denis Berezovskiy / Ignat Falkov (Nissan Patrol Y62) of Kazakhstan. Klaudia Podkalicka (Mitsubishi Pajero) did a good job and finally ended up second in the T2 category. T3 was won by, known from traditional rallying, Aron Domżała and Szymon Gospodarczyk.

LOTTO Baja Poland was also a round of Polish Championship for Cross Country Rallies, where the victory went to Hołowczyc, ahead of Ten Brinken and Kaczmarski. 

In the FIA CEZ in T1 group Krzyszof Hołowczyc took the victory, in T2 Klaudia Podkalicka, in T3 Aron Domżała and in TH Piotr Gadomski.

In the Polish Cross Country Cup in S1 group Piotr Bugajski / Kamil Nowak (Nissan Patrol) took the victory, while Tomasz Stokłosa and Karol Trzebny (Mitsubishi Pajero) were the fastest in S2. Sebastian Kałużny (Husaberg FE03) was the fastest motorcycle rider, Paweł Samek (Suzuki LTR 450) was the best of two-wheel drive quads, Arkadiusz Lindner among four-wheel drive quads (Can-Am Renegade), while Łukasz Szymczak and Artur Jankowski (Can-Am Maverick) won the UTV category.

LOTTO Baja Poland 2015 leaders: 

SS 1: Nasser Al-Attiyah 

SS 2 – 5: Krzysztof Hołowczyc 

LOTTO Baja Poland 2015 stage winners: 

SS 1: Nasser Al-Attiyah 

SS 2: Krzysztof Hołowczyc 

OS 3: Krzysztof Hołowczyc 

SS 4: Bernhard Ten Brinke 

SS 2: Nasser Al-Attiyah 

FIA World Cup for Cross Contry Rallies standings after LOTTO Baja Poland 2015: 

1 Nasser Al-Attiyah: 201 

2 Vladimir Vasilyev: 179 

3 Reinaldo Varela: 97 

4 Marek Dąbrowski: 92 

5 Miroslav Zapletal: 84 

Quotes after LOTTO Baja Poland 2015: 

Krzysztof Hołowczyc / Łukasz Kurzeja (MINI All4Racing): 
- It all went really well for us. Now the really is over. Always up until the last moment you never know what is going to happened, but a few corners away from the finish line we know that we have won the rally. We didn't put a wheel wrong over the course of the rally and we managed to keep some big names behind. Nasser arrived here very tired and that played a role for sure. I've managed to maintain the gap even though he tried to push. Winning in front of your home crowd is something special. My co-driver was making his cross-country debut, but we worked really well together. 
 
Nasser Al-Attiyah / Matthieu Baumel (MINI All4Racing): 
- It wasn't an easy rally, but obviously we're really happy. Second place is very good in terms of the FIA Word Cup season standings. I would like to congratulate Krzysztof, he drove really well. I wish to take part in the rally also next year. 
 
Bernhard Ten Brinke / Tom Colsoul (Toyota Hilux Overdrive):  
- It was great rally for us. Baja Poland is an amazing, but a very specific event. It's very hard to compete against Mini which, thanks to its diesel engine, has a lot more torque. We have a petrol engine in our Toyota that plays to our disadvantage mainly in a sandy terrain. 
 
Martin Kaczmarski / Tapio Suominen (Toyota Hilux Overdrive): 
- I'm fourth and I have to take it as a success. We're made it to the end in one piece, so I'm very pleased. I regret that we have lost third place. The podium wasn't far away. Today's stage wasn't my favourite. I was simply scared to run that fast between the trees. 
 
Marek Dąbrowski / Jacek Czachor (Toyota Hilux Overdrive): 
- Sunday was really good, we were really quick on the stages, whereas yesterday we were struggling with the set-up. All in all, I'm happy with the result.

Jakub Przygoński / Andreas Schulz (MINI All4Racing): 

- I'm really happy. Together with my co-driver we have kept really good pace. Our progression is our priority at the moment. I think that quite soon we should reduce the gap to the front-runners. Morocco is going to our next rally. 
 
Adam Małysz / Xavier Panseri (MINI All4Racing): 

- It wasn't the best rally for us. I haven't been driving a rally car since may and I could feel that. Drivers who drive more than us have the experience on their side.

Fot. Mateusz Banaś www.RallyFoto.pl

Organizers

Fundacja BAJA POLAND    PZM

Co-Organizers

Szczecin     Dobra Szczecińska     Drawsko Pomorskie

 

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