World Rally-Raid Championship

Krzysztof Holowczyc headlines FIA European Bajas champions

4 Mins read
Credit: Motorsand4x4

The FIA European Cup for Cross-Country Bajas was the first of the three FIA Bajas series to conclude their 2023 season last weekend at the Baja Troia Türkiye.

Just a week after completing the larger World Rally-Raid Championship’s season-ending Rallye du Maroc, Krzysztof Hołowczyc traded in his Mini JCW Rally Plus for a BMW X3 and secured his second European Cup. With the championship counting the three best finishes in the five-race season, he made the most of his reps by winning the Rally Greece Off-Road, Hungarian Baja, and in Turkey. The Turkey win came after a bizarre opening day in which every car went the wrong way due to a navigation error, though Hołowczyc credited his co-driver Łukasz Kurzeja with keeping them on track.

“It’s nice to win the European Cup and do a lot of rallies after a hard year,” said Hołowczyc. “This year, we passed. In the end, the goal was achieved, at least in the European Cup. Dakar (Rally) remains. I hope that all these hours spent behind the wheel of different cars will pay off in Dakar.”

The T3 championship ended in a tie between João Dias and Ghislan de Mévius, but the former held the tiebreaker. Although both were tied on wins with two apiece, Dias’ next best finish was a second in Hungary while de Mévius’ highest was third at the Baja TT Sharish Gin. De Mévius’ brother Guillaume, who runs GRallyTeam, opined in September that more than three races should count towards the championship.

Pau Navarro, another driver fresh off competing in Morocco, claimed the T4 title ahead of Fidel Castillo. Amerigo Ventura settled for third after winning the class in Turkey, though 2023 will be remembered more as a season of what-ifs for him: while he won twice in Hungary and Turkey, he crashed out of Spain while leading, lost the Greece victory to disqualification, and retired from Portugal when a silicone tube in his radiator’s cooling system got cut and leaked oil.

“In Greece that’s the hardest one probably because we were leading not the class, but the overall class, we got the trophy, we had the podium ceremony, press conference, but at the end, during final verification, one millimetre took our trophy,” recalled Ventura. “So for us, we missed first place to have the possibility to win the European Cup.

“But we are really happy, and I have to make the congratulations to Pau, that is the new European Champion in T4 class. He is a young driver, very talented, and I think he will have an amazing career, and we are happy to him. He deserves this result.”

The 2024 season, the first under the new FIA European Baja Cup name, once again begins with the Baja TT Dehesa Extremadura on 2–4 May.

Final standings

European Cup

Drivers’ standings

1Krzysztof Hołowczyc104Leader
2Ghislain de Mévius84– 20
3Tiago Reis68– 36
4João Ferreira60– 44
5João Dias59– 45
6Fernando Alvarez40– 64
7Amerigo Ventura39– 65
8Michał Małuszyński34– 70
9Pau Navarro30– 74
10Jesús Fuster29– 75
11Petr Hozák27– 77
12Miroslav Zapletal26– 78
13Fidel Castillo25– 79
T-14João Ramos24– 80
T-14İsrafi̇l Akyüz24– 80
T-16Henrique Silva21– 83
T-16Wlodzimierz Grajek21– 83
T-16Csucsu21– 83
19Urvo Männama19– 85
20Benediktas Vanagas17– 87
21Miguel Barbosa16– 88
T-22Alejandro Martins15– 89
T-22Adam Kus15– 89
24Alexandre Pinto14– 90
25Miguel Valero Chulia13– 91
26Armindo Araújo11– 93
27Mert Becce9– 95
T-28Kees Koolen8– 96
T-28Nuno Madeira8– 96
T-28Alessandro Trivini Bellini8– 96
T-28Karel Trneny8– 96
T-32Eylem Tekin Eristi7– 97
T-32Csaba Miklós7– 97
T-34Miguel Casaca6– 98
T-34Oscar Olivas6– 98
T-34Paulo Rodrigues6– 98
T-37Santiago Carnicer5– 99
T-37Marcin Graczyk5– 99
T-39Edgar Condenso4– 100
T-39Manuele Mengozzi4– 100
T-39Carlos Vento Sanchez4– 100
T-42Piotr Otko3– 101
T-42Slawomir Wasiak3– 101
T-44Frantisek Brutovsky2– 102
T-44Filipe Cameirinha2– 102

Co-drivers’ standings

1Łukasz Kurzeja104Leader
2Johan Jalet84– 20
3Valter Cardoso68– 36
4Filipe Palmeiro60– 44
5João Miranda59– 45
6Marek Sýkora53– 51
7Xavier Panseri40– 64
8Mirko Brun39– 65
9Pol Ros30– 74
10Carlos Fernandez29– 75
11Julita Małuszyńska27– 77
12Marc Sola Terradellas25– 79
13Jorge Carvalho24– 80
T-13Mert Tepe24– 80
T-15Henrique Damasio21– 83
T-15Michał Goleniewski21– 83
T-15Márk Mesterházi21– 83
18Risto Lepik19– 85
19Kuldar Sikk17– 87
20Tomas Neves16– 88
21José Marques15– 89
22Fausto Mota14– 90
23Fina Roman Aguilera13– 91
24Luis Ramalho11– 93
T-25Maciej Marton9– 95
T-25Sertaç Tatar9– 95
T-27José Janela8– 96
T-27Václav Pritzl8– 96
T-27Wouter Rosegaar8– 96
T-27Marco Trivini Bellini8– 96
T-31Ejder Tekin Erişti7– 97
T-31Szymon Gospodarczyk7– 97
T-31Albert Horn7– 97
T-34Luis Barrios6– 98
T-34João Luz6– 98
T-34Marcin Pasek6– 98
T-34Miguel Salvador6– 98
T-38Łukasz Łaskawiec5– 99
T-38Julián Villarrubia Garcia5– 99
T-40Erica Bombardini4– 100
T-40Carlos Ruiz Moreno4– 100
T-40Antonio Serrao4– 100
T-43Rafal Jedrys3– 101
T-43Karolina Otko3– 101
T-45Jeremy Dubois2– 102
T-45Petr Hauptmann2– 102

Teams’ standings

1Santag Rally116Leader
2GRallyTeam106– 10
3Fofso Power90– 26
4Colegio Mayor Universitario Elías Ahúja40– 76
5FN Speed Team38– 78
6Herrador Competición35– 81
7Quaddy Racing33– 83
8Rally Raid Team Türkiye31– 85
T-9Team Transfredelos30– 86
T-9Akpol Rally Team30– 86
11Speedy Motorsport28– 88
T-12X-raid Mini JCW Team20– 96
T-12X-raid Yamaha Supported Team20– 96
T-12Gedeser XXI S.L.20– 96
T-15OffroadSport17– 99
T-15Rally Raid Estonia17– 99
T-15Toyota Gazoo Racing Baltics17– 99
18Bedu Racing14– 102
19PRK Sport Rally Team11– 105
T-20DaklaPack Rallysport9– 107
T-20Workoutland Accr Czech Team9– 107
T-20Ming Racing Sports9– 108
23MMSport8– 109
T-24Marbet Lipsko Rally Team7– 109
T-24Proxcars TME Rally Team7– 110
T-26Overlimit6– 110
T-26Restless Team ukraine6– 113
T-28Coviar Raid Sport3– 113
T-28Escudería JMP Racing3– 114
30Baporo Motorsport2– 114

T2 drivers

1Alessandro Trivini Bellini120Leader
2Fernando Barreiras112– 8
3José Gameiro26– 94
4Tomas Gameiro23– 97

T3 drivers

T-1João Dias107Leader
T-1Ghislain de Mévius1070
3Fernando Alvarez82– 25
4Adam Kus64– 43
5Jesús Fuster48– 59
6Alexandre Pinto39– 68
7João Ferreira34– 73
8Armindo Araújo31– 76
9Paulo Rodrigues25– 82
10Filipe Cameirinha22– 85
T-11Kees Koolen19– 88
T-11Piotr Otko19– 88
T-13Csaba Miklós18– 89
T-13Miklós Trébitsch18– 89
15Oscar Olivas15– 92
T-16Elvis Borsoi12– 95
T-16Jordi Segura12– 95
18Gábor Grigalek11– 96
T-19Nicola Collodel8– 99
T-19Nuno Rogerio8– 99
T-19Daniel Silva8– 99
T-22Miguel Barbas7– 100
T-22Eduardo Eslava7– 100
T-22Vicor Grasa7– 100
T-25Rui Carneiro6– 101
T-25Nelson Jose Martinho6– 101
27John Knight5– 102
28Giancarlo Mammoli3– 104
29Hugo Manuel Cardoso2– 105

T4 standings

Drivers’ standings

1Pau Navarro98Leader
2Fidel Castillo89– 9
3Amerigo Ventura80– 18
4Miguel Valero Chulia76– 22
5Israfil Akyuz65– 33
6Artem Pomkan46– 52
7Marcin Graczyk41– 57
8Rui Farinha38– 60
9Carlos Vento Sanchez37– 61
10Mert Becce28– 70
11Grzegorz Brochocki16– 82
T-12Pedro Ruivo15– 83
T-12Miguel Toril15– 83
14Balázs Molnár14– 84
15Eylem Tekin Eristi13– 85
16Francisco Santos11– 87
T-17Paulo Rodrigues9– 89
T-17Yagiz Birinci9– 89
19João Manuel Carneiro8– 90
20Filipe Barreiros7– 91

Team standings

1Rally Raid Team Turkiye83Leader
2FN Speed Team80– 3
3Colegio Mayor Universitario Elías Ahúja75– 8
4Gedeser XXI S.L.67– 16
5Santag Racing61– 22
6Quaddy Racing60– 23
7Restless Team Ukraine49– 34
8Baporo Motorsport15– 68
9Overlimit15– 68
10M1 Motorsport13– 70
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Justin is not an off-road racer, but he writes about it for The Checkered Flag.
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