Kajetan Kajetanowicz and Maciej Szczepaniak have completed the first leg of Rally Catalunya de España, penultimate round of the 2022 World Rally Championship. The ORLEN Rally Team crew hold seventh position in the WRC2 classification, just 11 seconds behind their chief rivals in the title fight: Emil Lindholm and Reeta Hämäläinen. After the opening loop the Polish duo changed the set-up of their car and worked hard on improving their position.
This is the penultimate round of this year’s championship – with Mikkelsen/Eriksen leading the WRC2 standings with 109 points. However, the Norwegian crew had to skip not only the Spanish rally but also the season finale in Japan, as they have already reached the maximum number of seven rallies allowed in the regulations. Kajetanowicz and Szczepaniak hold second position (96 points), with Lindholm and Hämäläinen in third (89 points) – only these crews are still in the championship fight. This is why the Polish-Finnish battle is so important.
– To sum up the day, I would say that the feeling on the stages is good but not very good. We had known before the rally that it would not be easy and that we would have to take a risk at some point. I decided to try and unfortunately we went off the road for a moment. We lost a bit but it is important that we were able to continue. I am still searching for the best set-up, trying to improve my driving as well. It is really difficult when you don’t feel everything as well as you’d like – and with this competitive and tight field every tiny error costs a lot. This is not the end of the rally, we are still facing two days of competition and I am happy to be here. I love my job, looking forward to tomorrow with great faith
– Kajetan Kajetanowicz, the ORLEN Rally Team, commented after the first loop.
Saturday’s leg of Rally Catalunya de España 2022 consists of seven special stages. The day starts with SS9 Savallà (13.93 kms, at 8:44 CET), followed by SS10 Querol-Les Pobles (20.19 kms, at 9:37) and the longest test of the rally SS11 El Montmell (24.17 kms, at 10:38). The same set of stages will be run again, at 14:14, 15:07 and 16:08 respectively, and the day ends with a city stage Salou (2.15 kms, at 18:40 CET).
Starts of Kajetan Kajetanowicz are supported by strategic partner of the ORLEN Rally Team – PKN ORLEN, as well as technical partner Delphi Technologies, Pirelli, Grupa Sikora and SJS Driving Experience.
Rally Catalunya de España 2022, unofficial WRC2 standings after SS8:
- Suninen/Markkula (Finland, Hyundai i20 N Rally2) 1:10:04.1
- Griazin/Aleksandrow (Russia, Škoda Fabia Rally2 evo) +12.7
- Rossel/Dunand (France, Citroën C3 Rally2) +16.7
- Huttunen/Lukka (Finland, Ford Fiesta Rally2) +38.7
- Sarrazin/Renucci (France, VW Polo GTI R5) +45.1
- Lindholm/Hämäläinen (Finland, Škoda Fabia Rally2 evo) +1:00.5
- Kajetanowicz/Szczepaniak (Poland, Škoda Fabia Rally2 evo) +1:11.5
- Zaldivar/Der Ohannesian (Paraguay/Italy, Hyundai i20 N Rally2) +1:36.9
- Munster/Louka (Luxembourg/Belgium, Hyundai i20 N Rally2) +1:39.1
- Marczyk/Gospodarczyk (Poland, Škoda Fabia Rally2 evo) +1:46.3