Thursday | 04 Aug 2022

Simaška eyes full-time Peugeot switch

FIA Junior ERC frontrunner Justas Simaška plans to purchase his own Peugeot 208 Rally4 after sampling one of the French machines at Rally di Roma Capitale.

The Lithuanian star debuted in the ERC earlier this season and steered a Ford Fiesta Rally4 to some impressive times in Poland and Latvia. He came close to a Liepāja podium but plummeted down the order with a costly puncture on the final day.

Simaška rented a Peugeot from Hungarian team NGS Racing for the most recent round in Italy. While the rally didn’t go to plan after a crash on day two, the 25-year-old is looking to buy his own 208. 

The Fiesta is now up for sale, although he told FIAERC.com the switch is unlikely to take place immediately - with 2023 being the target.

“This is the plan, and we are fully concentrating on next season,” he said. “I can’t really compare the two cars because I only drove the Peugeot on Tarmac, but they are both good in different areas.

Simâska's Ford (above) is up for sale

“The Peugeot has a slightly bigger engine and, because of that, maybe a little more power. I also think it has been tested more on Tarmac. 

“As soon as I drove it, I felt comfortable straight away. You can just sit in and drive and from the beginning it’s good. Rome was my first ever time driving a rally car on Tarmac, so I had no expectations - but we were enjoying a lot before the crash.”

While Simaška will not contest any of the remaining rounds of this year’s championship, he remained positive about his performances this season.

JUNIOR ERC: RALLY DI ROMA CAPITALE HIGHLIGHTS

“After our crash, my co-driver (Giedrius Nomeika) needs a couple of months to heal, so we will not do any more starts this year. 

“Overall, I think we can be happy about our speed this year. With such a small amount of kilometres in rallies this year, we showed good pace against some of the other guys who have done more rallies than us. 

“We did some good times and I understood my potential that I can be fast - it’s just unfortunate that we were also unlucky in some places, but that happens sometimes.”