Kajetanowicz leads the 2016 FIA ERC standings

Taking the lead in the overall standings of the FIA European Rally Championship with a 22 point advantage was a great way for Kajetanowicz and Baran to finish an extremely difficult battle at last weekend’s Circuit of Ireland.

Just like one year ago, rally fans witnessed some incredible competition with Kajto and his fiercest rivals battling for the top positions.

The LOTOS Rally Team crew pushed Craig Breen to the very last metres and won the second leg of the rally – finishing the event in style with their third stage win on the final speed test.

However, Irishman Craig Breen, with his vast experience on the local roads, defended the lead against the charge of his Polish rival. The Champions from Poland defeated many other experienced crews and all regular competitors of the British Rally Championship.

On their way to another podium finish in the FIA European Rally Championship – their eighth in succession – Kajetanowicz and Baran showed what we can already call their trademark ‘consistency and efficiency.’

The Polish crew – behind the wheel of a Ford Fiesta R5 – finished nine of the 14 special stages in the top three and posted the fasted time through three of them.

The pairing scored 31 points out of a possible 39 points, including six points for second position on Day 1, seven points for their Day 2 victory and 18 points for the second place in the overall standings. This result means that Kajetanowicz and Baran have secured 60 points after just two rounds of this year’s championship.

Kajetan Kajetanowicz said:

“Before each rally we gather as much information as possible. We analyse every possible scenario, we draw conclusions from previous starts and we try to prepare ourselves for almost every situation.

“We do all these things in order to spare us surprises and additional tension during the event, but thankfully we never know everything. In every round of the FIA European Rally Championship something surprises us. This is why I learn all the time and there are some things we need to improve.

“The whole team has the right tools, but if we want to defend our European Championship title we have to learn how to use them in an even better way. It is not possible to take right decisions absolutely every time – although each one is crucial when we fight for fractions of seconds.

“Rallies are not a laboratory, you cannot probe everything. But on one hand this is good because we love such competition – we, the sportsmen, and our fans. There were many spectators here and their support gave us lots of strength. We take risks and work hard exactly for these incredible moments and emotions which you simply cannot forget.”

Jarek Baran said:

“Again we did something good for Polish rally here in Ireland with another second place – again so close to Craig Breen who was the local favourite. The Circuit of Ireland is an extremely demanding rally for a multitude of reasons: unpredictable weather, narrow roads with lots of jumps. There are many difficult events but Ireland represents the very essence of Tarmac rallying.”