ERC Poland Rally Leg two round-up: Lukyanuk wins from the front

ERC Poland Rally Leg two round-up: Lukyanuk wins from the front

20.06.2021: FIA European Rally Championship 2021, Round 1 of 8 ORLEN 77th Rally Poland Sunday,June 20th,2021 Despite his comfortable margin of almost half a minute, Lukyanuk was rapid out of the blocks with the fastest time on Sunday’s opening test. He beat M


FIA European Rally Championship 2021, Round 1 of 8
ORLEN 77th Rally Poland
Sunday,June 20th,2021

Despite his comfortable margin of almost half a minute, Lukyanuk was rapid out of the blocks with the fastest time on Sunday’s opening test. He beat Mikkelsen by 2.0s to grow his advantage to 31.7s as Craig Breen went third quickest ahead of Marczyk, Simone Tempestini and Norbert Herczig.



Like Tempestini, Breen restarted on day two following his leg one exit with suspension damage and capitalised on his lower starting position to edge Lukyanuk on SS10 by 1.2s and claim a first stage win of 2021 for Team MRF Tyres and the Indian manufacturer’s first on gravel in the ERC. However, with Lukyanuk beating Mikkelsen by 2.3s, the Russian’s advantage out front increased to 34.0s.



Mikkelsen began the journey south to Warsaw with back-to-back stage wins courtesy of best times on SS11 and SS12 with his charge through the latter, Gmina Mragowo, streamed live on Facebook and YouTube.



It was 8.3s faster than Lukyanuk and meant Mikkelsen would start the penultimate Przasnysz stage (SS13) 22.6s in arrears of the leader. Although Breen took the stage win, Mikkelsen outpaced Lukyanuk by 5.2s. His gap to Lukyanuk was now 17.4s with just the Rally Poland 100th Anniversary stage in Warsaw remaining.



Measuring 1.96 kilometres in length, it would take a major failure from Lukyanuk for Mikkelsen to win. But a trouble-free run from Lukyanuk ensured victory by 18.4s. Mikkelsen claimed second for Toksport WRT ahead of fellow Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo driver Marczyk (ORLEN Team).



Rallye Team Spain drivers Nil Solans and Efrén Llarena sandwiched Škoda Rally Team Hungaria’s Herczig in fourth and sixth respectively with Llarena closing to within 1.7s of Herczig at the finish. Solans was the best of Rally Poland rookies on the back of a strong performance after early troubles on only his second ERC start.



Former ERC2 champion Wojciech Chuchała was in fourth when a mechanical fault struck. A time penalty dropped him to seventh, one place ahead of 2020 French title winner Yoann Bonato. The CHL Sport Auto driver set off on the road to Warsaw in sixth only for a reported engine issue to drop him to eighth. Erik Cais (Yacco ACCR Team) finished ninth, 4.9s down on Bonato with Grzegorz Grzyb, a former Polish champion, completing the top 10 for Rufa Motor-Sport.



Chilean Emilio Fernàndez finished P11 for Toksport WRT having started leg two in P15, while ERC rookie Adrian Chwietczuk came home in P12 – 0.1s behind – alongside three-time ERC champion co-driver Jarek Baran. Pole Chwietczuk drives for Hołowczyz Racing, the team founded by Krzysztof Hołowczyc, the 1997 European champion who was on course car driving duty this weekend.



Despite having to open the road – and clear a line through the loose-surface gravel for his rivals behind – Umberto Scandola finished P13 for Hyundai Rally Team Italia. Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy’s Callum Devine was P14 having been hampered by gearbox problems on Saturday. Roland Poom and Tomasz Kasperczyk, who fought back from a roll on SS4, finished P15 and P16 respectively.



With his Hyundai i20 R5 restored to full working order after damage caused by a right-rear puncture on Saturday afternoon, Luxembourg hope Grégoire Munster clocked several rapid stage times to finish P20 behind Italian promise Alberto Battistolli.




- Richard Rodgers, photos FIA ERC

Permanent-URL: http://www.automobilsport.com/poland-round-up-lukyanuk-wins-front---225266.html

20.06.2021 / MaP

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