Przygoński second in the FIA World Cup

2017 FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies enters its key phase, while the ORLEN Baja Poland, scheduled during the first weekend of September, will be the 9th round out of this year’s total 11. Jakub Przygoński at this stage of the rivalry holds the very high 2nd place in overall standings and his goal will be to defend the runner-up spot.

The ORLEN Team driver began this year’s rivalry from the 4th round – Sealine Cross Country Rally held in Qatar, where he finished on a brilliant 2nd place overall. However, a true break came during Baja Italia, where Przygoński took his first ever FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies win.

- It was an amazing feeling to stand on the highest step of the podium. Obviously, two podiums earlier on were also great, but it wasn’t the same as being the fastest one in the whole rally – Mini ALL4 Racing driver comments – We come to every rally with a thought of getting the best possible result and we already had a good pace last year. This time in Italy though we managed to complete all little puzzles together and achieve the goal. What is also important – our cooperation with Tom Colsoul is getting better and better with each event.

After champagnes and cheer it was time for another challenge for the Polish driver – Baja Aragon. The Spanish round brought a lot of new stuff for Jakub Przygoński – besides the special stages themselves, car and co-driver – Xavier Panseri – were also new.

- The switch on my right seat was a bit of a coincidence. At the beginning of the season we didn’t plan to take part in the Spanish Baja Aragon. However, because we were on a very good position in the overall standings, we’ve decided to change our original plan – Przygoński explains. – At this time Tom was competing in Silk Way Rally, so we made the decision about the change. I am really happy about that start, because hearing out other pilot’s signals and comments was really helpful. Xavier, like any other co-driver in the world, has his own approach, which gave me some interesting conclusions.

More than that, the German X-raid team prepared a new version of Mini ALL4 Racing for Jakub Przygoński, who debuted behind its wheel in Spain. – The new car is actually a transitional one, before we have a final construction prepared for Rally Dakar. The car has a lower centre of gravity and in future will also lose around 100 kilograms.

The Orlen TEAM representative managed all those challenges really well, finishing the Baja Aragon on 6th place, keeping the runner-up position in overall World Cup standings. However, it was the first rally during the 2017 season, in which we didn’t see the Pole on the podium.

- Baja Aragon is a great rally – very nice, truly gravel routes and many supporters everywhere – Przygoński recollects. – If I have the chance, I will be glad to come back there next year. With the experience and knowledge, we will be more confident and faster.

August is also the time, when all competitors begin their preparations before Rally Dakar scheduled for January 2018. – To be honest we start to think about Dakar in the same moment, the previous one ended. Now we have five months of tough trainings, as well as three rallies of the season left – Przygoński, who took part in the 8th round of this year’s FIA World Cup for Cross Country Ralies – Hungarian Baja, highlighted. The Orlen Team competitor, together with Tom Colsoul, finished the rivalry on 3rd place, thanks to which he will arrive in Szczecin as a runner-up of overall standings.

Even if we don’t have many rallies in the FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies in the calendar left, Przygoński doesn’t take anything for granted. – Nasser Al-Attiyah has quite an advantage over us, and if we’d think of catching him, he had to retire from two rallies, while we should be very strong in them. We will surely want to hold our 2nd position and I hope we will not give it back to our rivals until the end. Maybe sometimes we will have to drive a bit slower, to collect precious points, but we will most certainly not give up.

The Mini ALL4 Racing driver also announced that in Szczecin fight for the best possible result in the overall standings of the ORLEN Baja Poland will be more important than mathemathics and cool head. – We will for sure try to win the Polish round. It is our home rally, in front of our supporters, so we will feel comfortable and confident on special stages. In previous years this competition wasn’t the luckiest for me. Last year our car broke down and we lost plenty of time, though we still had a very good pace. I hope this time we will be able to turn the fortune on our site and finish on a good position.


FIA World Cup for Cross Country Rallies (standings after Hungarian Baja)

1.         Nasser Al-Attiyah (QAT)             210
2.         Jakub Przygoński (POL)               138
3.         Khalid Al-Qassimi (ZEA)             105
4.         Yasir Seaidan (SAU)                     93
5.         Aron Domżała (POL)                    86
6.         Mohammed Abu Issa (QAT)         84
7.         Martin Prokop (CZE)                    70
8.       Miroslav Zapletal (CZE)                  45
9.       Leeroy Poulter (ZAF)                      42
10.     Yahya Al Helei (ZEA)                      30      


2017 FIA World Cup for Cross Country calendar:

24/02 – 26/02 Baja Russia – Northern Forest
09/03 – 11/03 Dubaj Baja
01/04 – 07/04 Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge
16/04 – 21/04 Sealine Cross Country Rally
20/05 – 27/05 Rally Kazahkstan
15/06 – 18/06 Italian Baja
21/07 – 23/07 Baja Espana Aragon
10/08 – 13/08 Hungarian Baja
31/08 – 03/09 ORLEN Baja Poland
04/10 – 10/10 Rallye du Maroc
26/10 – 28/10 Baja Portalegre 500




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