Although it didn’t seem to be the case, at first glance: X-raid could live Hungary in a satisfied mood. Khalifa Al Mutaiwei from Dubai and his German navigator Andreas Schulz finished seventh in the Baja Hungary, the fifth round of the FIA Cross Country Rally World Cup season. A result that was enough for them to gain the World Cup lead. In the third special stage, Jean-Louis Schlesser, the previous World Cup leader, was forced into retirement by a technical failure and consequently, he had to leave Hungary empty-handed.
With distances of about 50 and 70 kilometres, the special stages of the Baja Hungary were short – but extremely demanding. At temperatures of more than 30° C, the competitors had to cope with extremely dry and bumpy track surfaces – that proved to be gruelling for both vehicles and drivers. Following the retirement of Schlesser, Al Mutaiwei opted for taking it somewhat easy. The driver from Dubai didn’t want to take a risk and preferred to secure the points for finishing seventh, instead.
In two weeks time, the World Cup for Cross Country Rallies calendar features the next round, the Baja Poland.
Overall result Baja Hungary:
1st B. Gadasin (RUS)/A. Kuzmich (RUS) G-Force Proto – 4h 01m 29s
2nd K. Fazekas (HUN)/A. Horn (HUN) BMW X5 – 4h 05m 02s
3rd C. Casuneanu (ROM)/M. Zani (ITA) Mitsubishi – 4h 09m 23m
4th M. Zapletal (CZE)/M. Marton (POL) H3 Evo – 4h 10m 48s
7th K. Al Mutaiwei (UAE)/A. Schulz (GER) MINI ALL4 Racing – 4h 19m 24s