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Kuba Przygoński and Timo Gottschalk grabbed stage victory on the last day of Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge 2019. In the overall standings, Orlen Team’s crew finished out of top 10, due to a mechanical failure on the penultimate day of competition.

This year’s start in Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge was a real rollercoaster for Przygoński and Gottschalk. In the first stage, the duo driving MINI John Cooper Works Buggy was close to stage victory, but 5 km before the finish a driveshaft broke in their car. Orlen Team’s crew was the fastest in the third stage of the rally, but the next day they couldn’t start because of gearbox failure. Victory in the 214,47 km long last stage confirmed very good disposition of Przygoński and Gottschalk. 

“During this rally, we saw that we’re very fast. We probably would have won the first stage, but we had a driveshaft failure only 5 km before the finish. Later, we won the third and the last stage, which showed that we’re very fast. We have learned a lot about our MINI Buggy. We need many kilometers driven and experience to learn to use the full potential of the car. We have to think which car we shall drive in Kazakhstan Rally because MINI 4x4 is certainly more reliable. We are satisfied with a nice fight. We showed that we adapted quickly to the new car – we won almost all battles with Cyril Despres. I’m also happy with a good rivalry, but also cooperation with Martin Prokop,” Orlen Team’s driver Kuba Przygoński said.

Orlen Team’s crew finished in 18th place in Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge 2019. The winner of the rally was Stephane Peterhansel (MINI John Cooper Works Rally), who presented very even driving throughout the whole event. 2nd place went to Khalid Al-Qassimi (Peugeot 3008 DKR), who proved again to be very dangerous on his home soil. The lowest step of the podium was taken by Aron Domżała (Toyota Hilux), who did a great job in the last part of the rally.

Abu Dhabi Desert Challenge was the 2nd round of FIA World Cup for Cross-Country Rallies. The best cross-country rally competitors will continue racing in this series in Kazakhstan Rally at the end of May. 

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

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