(21.05.2023) Martins Sesks and Francis Renars (Skoda Fabia RS Rally2) have pulled clear of Paddon and Kennard (Hyundai i20 N Rally2) during morning loop of stages. With four stages to go, Latvian duo holds an 19,2 s advantage. Third placed Marczyk and Gospodarczyk (Skoda Fabia RS Rally2) are nearly a minute behind rally leaders (+54,9 s).

Four stages, all run twice, are scheduled for Sunday in Polish ERC counter. Crews headed west of rally HQ in Mikolajki to cover two brand new stages in Barczewo (10,73 km) and Biskupiec (12,3), followed by Gmina Mragowo (9,4 km) and Mikolajki tests.

Paddon and Kennard won the leg-opening stage, but they suffered a slow puncture, and changed the wheel after the finish. Having taken just one spare wheel from the service park, New Zealanders needed to stay in cautious mode on three following stages, because another puncture could rule them out of the rally.

Meanwhile Sesks and Francis kept pushing and clocked fastest times on all three following stages, pulling clear of Paddon. Latvians headed for a midday service with comfortable 19,2 s in hand over former Hyundai Motorsport factory crew.

Having finished all four morning stages in top three, Marczyk and Gospodarczyk kept the third position and increased the gap between them and fourth-placed Ostberg/Barth (Citroen C3 Rally2, +1:11,7 s). Norwegian driver pushed Josh McErlean (Hyundai i20 N Rally2, +1:13,0 s) down to fifth overall after final stage of the morning loop.

Jon Armstrong and Cameron Fair are in league of their own, as the dominated ERC3 category. British duo earned stunning 15-minute advantage over second-placed crew.

Ola Nore jnr. and Rune Eilertsen are on their way to win both ERC4 and ERC Junior category, as they have nearly a minute in hand over their rivals, with four more stages to go.

ORLEN 79th Rally Poland – overall classification after SS12:

1. Sesks/Renars (LVA/LVA, Skoda Fabia RS Rally2)   1:14:14,1 s

2. Paddon Kennard (NZL/NZL, Hyundai i20 N Rally2)   +19,2 s

3. Marczyk/Gospodarczyk (POL/POL, Skoda Fabia RS Rally2)   +54,9 s

4. Ostberg/Barth (NOR/SWE, Citroen C3 Rally2)   +1:11,7 s

5. McErlean/Rowan (IRL/IRL, Hyundai i20 N Rally2)   +1:13,0 s

6. Heikkila/Vaaleri (FIN/FIN, Skoda Fabia Rally2 evo)   +1:16,7 s

7. Franceschi/Escartefigue (FRA/FRA, Skoda Fabia Rally2 evo)   +1:18,7 s

8. Tempestini/Itu (ROU/ROU, Skoda Fabia Rally2 evo)   +1:41,8 s

9. Mabellini/Menzi (ITA/ITA, Skoda Fabia Rally2 evo)   +1:42,4 s

10. Cais/Bacigal (CZE/SVK, Skoda Fabia RS Rally2)   +2:08,4 s