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Three weeks after their victorious appearance at Dubai Baja, Kuba Przygoński and Timo Gottschalk are to return to the United Arab Emirates, where on Sunday Orlen Team’s crew will start in Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge.

Five demanding stages in the desert sands of United Arab Emirates awaits Kuba Przygoński and Timo Gottschalk. On Sunday, competitors will tackle 261,97 km long first special stage. Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge is a typical desert rally, which means a good occasion for Przygoński and Gottschalk to test the 2WD car again. “In Abu Dhabi, I’ll drive the Buggy for the second time. After Dubai, we want to tackle the desert sands and check if the 2WD car can go as fast, or even faster than 4x4. The challenge is big because I have little experience in driving this kind of car. It is the only World Cup round where we’re driving fully in soft sand. Competitors like this event, because the weather is always fine, though sometimes sandstorms occur. But I hope this year there won’t be any,” Orlen Team’s driver Kuba Przygoński says. 

Orlen Team’s crew will compete with Dakar top drivers, among others, 13-time Dakar Rally winner Stephane Peterhansel and 5-time winner Cyril Despres will also take part in the event. Also, Yazeed Al-Rajhi and Khalid Al-Qassimi, the latter driving on his home soil, will be a threat to Przygoński and Gottschalk.

On Friday morning tests for Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge took place. Orlen Team’s crew already has an adventure of this rally under the belt – a roll. Luckily, nothing happened to the crew members, and the car will be ready for the first stage. “Driving through one of the dunes, we noticed a big hole behind it. We didn’t want to get stuck in it, so I kept full gas, not to stop. But the sand was so hard that our car suddenly accelerated, and we jumped out of the hole. I think we flew for 5-6 meters, and then we didn’t fall on four wheels, but only on one, and our car fell on its roof.  Luckily, it turned again. Nothing serious happened to the car, we’re ok, too, and we can continue the rally,” Przygoński explains. 

Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge is the 2nd round of FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies. The final stage of the rally will take place on 4th April.

Source: Press release of Orlen Team
Translation and adaptation: Anna Michalska, Rita Kónya

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