Rally Poland’s return to the FIA World Rally Championship calendar has been greeted with largely positive comments by two of the drivers that took part.
The event was included in the WRC calendar for the first time in five years and organisers were keen to make a positive impact last week.
The rally featured a virtually new organising team and ran smoothly, apart from some disruption on Friday when two of the stages in neighbouring Lithuania had to be cancelled due to the deterioration of the road conditions after the first pass.
Elfyn Evans, one of the least experienced drivers in the WR Car field, liked what he saw at LOTOS 71st Rally Poland.
He said: “Once I got into my rhythm, I enjoyed the rally. The stages are unbelievably fast and when you’re feeling positive, they’re a real pleasure to drive.
“The event itself worked well. It was a shame we had to miss two stages on Friday, but all-in-all it’s been well organised and I hope we have the opportunity to come back next year.”
Reigning world champion and rally winner, Sebastien Ogier, saw potential despite the stage cancellations and the longer four-day format.
“We spoke about the timing which was a bit crazy and a lot of road sections,” he said. “I think the rally was missing a rhythm because we were waiting a lot and quite exhausted by doing so many kilometres on the roads.
“But I think the stages themselves are really beautiful and the crowds are amazing. It has good potential to make a really nice rally.”
Ogier, who tackled the 2009 event in a Citroen C4 WRC, was also impressed with the condition of the stages that were used this time around in Poland.
He said: “The roads didn’t cut up as much as they did in 2009. In 2009 it was very soft ground and the second loop was very rutted. This year was quite okay. Some sections were difficult but still quite a big pleasure to drive in the second loop.”
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