Pole Pieniazek signs up for home ERC run
ERC Junior graduate Łukasz Pieniazek will be back on FIA European Rally Championship duty when his native Poland returns to the all-action schedule later this month.
Pieniazek followed fellow young talents such as Fabio Andolfi, Emil Bergkvist and Stéphane Lefebvre by stepping up to the world championship after gaining experience – and results – in the Pirelli-supported ERC Junior category for R2 cars.
While the world championship is currently his focus with events in Great Britain and Spain also part of his upcoming programme, Pieniazek is relishing the prospect of returning to the ERC and contesting the 75th PZM Rally Poland from 21-23 September.
And by registering for FIA ERC Junior Under 28, the category for young stars in R5 cars, Pieniazek will be in direct competition with fellow emerging prospects including title leader Fabian Kreim, double event winner Nikolay Gryazin and Chris Ingram, the 2017 ERC Junior Under 27 champion.
“We’re really excited to be returning to the European championship on Rally Poland where we can compete in front of our home crowd, including our sponsors and partners,” said Pieniazek, 27. “I’m registered for the FIA ERC Junior Under 28 Championship so it will be good to go up against some of the drivers I used to compete against in ERC Junior and it will also be great preparation for the upcoming world championship rallies we’ll be taking part in, Rally GB and Catalunya.”
Pieniazek will pilot a ŠKODA Fabia R5 for Finnish squad Printsport alongside co-driver and compatriot Przemyslaw Mazur. He has high hopes for a top result.
“I’ve done Rally Poland on two previous occasions, in 2016 when I finished sixth in class in a Citroën DS3 R3T and last year when I drove a PEUGEOT 208 T16 to P11 in my category. However, with World Rally Cars not allowed in the ERC, this will be the first time I’ll be able to fight for the overall top spots on what is one of my favourite events.”
ERC Co-ordinator Jean-Baptiste Ley said he was pleased to welcome Pieniazek back to the championship he last contested in 2016 prior to his graduation to world level.
“It’s great Łukasz is returning to the ERC for his home round of the championship and for what will be a great opportunity to prove his talent against a highly competitive field,” said Ley. “Łukasz was a frontrunner in ERC Junior before his step up to world level and it will be interesting to watch him putting into practice what he has learned since graduating.”