Pirelli clinches European Rally Championship title with Kajetanowicz
Kajetan Kajetanowicz, co-driven by Jaroslaw Baran, has clinched the European Rally Championship with one round to go, after winning the legendary Acropolis Rally in Greece at the wheel of a Pirelli-equipped Ford Fiesta R5. For the Polish driver it was a well-deserved triumph after an extraordinary season where he won on all types of surfaces, boosted by the performance and versatility of Pirelli tyres. This year’s Acropolis was so challenging that the extreme weather, with torrential rain, forced the organisers to conclude the event early. The Pirelli XR5 and K4 Reinforced tyres allowed the drivers to get through even the thickest mud in Greece and display their talents. Kajetanowicz was the first rally leader, before being caught and passed by local driver Lambros Athanassoulas, making his debut in a Pirelli-equipped Skoda Fabia R5 run by Motorsport Italia.
Kajetanowicz needed only to finish the rally in order to be crowned European Rally Champion, so he did not resist an attack from Craig Breen on day two – although he was still within touching distance of his rival. On the final stage before the rally was abandoned though, Kajetanowicz moved back into the lead. He eventually won the event from Breen, with Pirelli drivers Athanassoulas and Alexey Lukyanuk (Ford Fiesta R5) in third and fourth.
Pirelli’s product manager Terenzio Testoni said: “Kajetan Kajetanowicz’s success is all the more significant because he managed to beat some factory teams; for us it’s a source of huge pride and satisfaction to have contributed to the European title with a private driver. Kajto has enjoyed a magnificent season, showing his abilities on all types of surfaces and demonstrating the capabilities of his Pirelli tyres. In Greece, the victory came on a surface that was almost impossible to drive over.”
Kajetanowicz is the third Polish driver to have won the European Rally Championship, after Sobieslav Zasada (1966 and 1967) and Krzysztof Holowczyc (1997).
The final round of the European Rally Championship is the Rallye International du Valais in Switzerland from 29-31 October.
|Kajetan Kajetanowicz: European Rally Champion with Pirelli
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