The ORLEN Rally Team crew of Kajetan Kajetanowicz and Maciej Szczepaniak won the opening stage of Safari Rally Kenya in the WRC2 category. The Polish duo started the competition in the legendary World Rally Championship in style – returning to the scene of their last year’s triumph. They still face eighteen long and demanding stages over the next three days.
The competition in Safari Rally Kenya started with a superspecial Kasarani, just over 4.8 kilometres long – on an exciting side-by-side circuit, built especially for this purpose. Kajetanowicz and Szczepaniak went head to head with Solberg and Edmondson, who do not score championship points in this event. The ORLEN Rally Team duo set the fastest time in their category.
– We have just completed the first stage of Safari Rally. I think it’s the easiest one but anyway I drove it carefully. We are facing many kilometres of difficult competition. I remember that last year it also started in a seemingly easy way, only to get really, really tough later – but we did our job. I hope that this year we will also do our best and our car will not let us down. We will keep maximum concentration, there are plenty of very difficult spots on the stages and it is just not possible to detect all of them during the recce. I hope that we noted down most of them or at least the most dangerous ones – and that we will successfully and quickly reach the finish line. I love competition, I love to drive fast. I feel that the tougher, the better – so I will try to do my job
– Kajetan Kajetanowicz, the ORLEN Rally Team driver, comments after the superspecial.
The Friday’s leg of Safari Rally Kenya consists of two runs of three stages: SS2/5 Loldia (19.17 kms), SS3/6 Geothermal (13.12 kms) and SS4/7 Kedong (30.62 kms).
Starts of Kajetan Kajetanowicz are supported by titular partner of the ORLEN Rally Team – PKN ORLEN, as well as technical partner Delphi Technologies, Pirelli, ATC CARGO S.A., PLATINUM ORLEN OIL brand, QUAZAR LOTOS OIL brand and SJS S.A.
Safari Rally Kenya 2023, unofficial WRC2 standings after SS1:
- Kajetanowicz/Szczepaniak (Škoda Fabia RS Rally2) 3:27.2
- Munster/Louka (Ford Fiesta Rally2) +0.8 s
- Prokop/Jůrka (Ford Fiesta Rally2) +2.2 s
- Kremer/Gottschalk (Škoda Fabia Rally2 evo) +2.5 s
=. Chwist/Heller (Škoda Fabia RS Rally2) +2.5 s
- Tundo/Jessop (Škoda Fabia R5) +8.7 s
- Díaz-Aboitiz/Sanjuan de Eusebio (Škoda Fabia Rally2 evo) +10.2 s
- Virani/Bhatti (Škoda Fabia R5) +16.6 s
- Vassilakis/Krawszik (Ford Fiesta Rally2) +22.1 s
- Patel/Khan (Ford Fiesta R5) +22.3 s