Gaining experience in Ypres
Kajto Kajetanowicz, Subaru Poland's factory driver, is looking forward to what is sure to be a challenging weekend. Having been at the forefront of the Polish Rally Championship for many years, Kajetanowicz is now embarking on his first foreign event at the Geko Ypres Rally. While it's very much a home event for the Symtech Racing team that runs the car, the narrow roads in the Westhoek region are an unpredictable voyage of discovery for the visiting Polish crew.
Kajto Kajetanowicz: "I'm delighted to be experiencing a completely different type of event. And I'd like to thank my sponsors for the great opportunity of contesting an event that is as well-known and prestigious as the Geko Ypres Rally. I'm certainly not going to be taking any risks because firstly my mission here is to accumulate as much experience as possible and secondly because the next round of the Polish Rally Championship, the Bohemia Rally, takes place next week! So I'm coming to Ypres without any particular expectations and principally just to learn."
There is a strong Group N entry for Ypres, with some extremely talented drivers. Dutchman Jasper van de Heuvel is undoubtedly the big favourite but there are also going to be several very strong locals, such as Vincent Verschueren, who will also be driving a Symtech Racing Subaru. Other highlights of the Group N entry include Toshi Arai - who is nonetheless far from being an asphalt specialist - and the extremely quick Ukrainian driver Yuri Protasov, at the wheel of a third Symtech Racing Subaru Impreza.
Wim De Boeck (Symtech Racing): "After a fantastic victory on the Rally Poland, which counts towards the European Championship, this time Kajto will face an entirely different experience. The field in Ypres is of extremely high quality, with 25 cars in the Super 2000 category and a good number of strong Group N runners. But we've got a huge amount of faith in Kajto - especially as Jarek Baran is alongside him, who has competed in Ypres twice before. Whatever happens, it's going to be an extremely enjoyable event for us and we hope that our drivers will be able to put on a great show for the enthusiastic Belgian public."
The rally gets underway on Friday afternoon, using asphalt roads around Ypres. Conditions are expected to be warm and sunny.