LOTOS Rally Team‘s Kajetan Kajetanowicz took his first win of the season on his home event Rally Rzeszow, round seven of the 2016 FIA European Rally Championship. The Polish driver crossed the finish line in his Ford Fiesta R5 to win the event by 46 seconds over his rival Bryan Bouffier in a Citroen DS3 R5.
The Pole came into the final day with a healthy lead of over 33 seconds and he set about finishing the rally off by winning the first three stages of the final day. Kajetanowicz headed into the service halt with a lead of 53.9 seconds. From then on it was a case of bringing the car home over the final three stages, the win gives him a lead of 76 points in the championship standings with three rounds to go.
“It’s amazing winning here,” said Kajetanowicz, co-driven by Jarek Baran. “I was pushing very hard. To fight and win against Bryan is a big pleasure, he’s a very fast driver on Tarmac. It was a perfect weekend for us; we won many stages and more importantly we won the rally and scored maximum points.”
After a slow start to the day Bouffier won the final three stages despite damaging his radiator on SS11, he and co-driver Xavier Panseri used chewing gum as a temporary fix to get the car to the finish. Grzegorz Grzyb managed to hold onto the final podium spot over three minutes off the lead. The current Polish Rally Championship leader finished 26.5 seconds ahead of Łukasz Habaj who recovered well after going off the road on the second stage.
Jakub Brzeziński had been fourth but went off the road on the final stage and dropped a place. He finished over four minutes off the lead. Tomasz Kasperczykwas another driver to succumb to Habaj’s attack and dropped from fifth to sixth with a spin.
Wojciech Chuchała clinched his fifth ERC2 win of the season with a commanding victory in his Subaru Impreza, the Pole finished 7th overall also. The close battle in ERC3 that materialised on Friday ended early in Saturday when Tomasz Gryc rolled his Rallytechnology Peugeot 208 R2 that left Nikolay Gryazin with a commanding lead which he held until the the end if the event winning the class by over three minutes from László Német.