|Hungarian Baja: Top line-up - Interview with organizer Zoli Garamvolgyi.|
Hungary is just one week away from hosting another motorsport competition after WTCC and Formula 1. This time Papa will be the location of the Hungarian Baja where a series of well-known races will be held.
First of all, the FIA and the FIM will organize their next World Championship races, the UEM will host its European Championship race in motorcycle category and moreover the MNASZ will organize the next stage of the Hungarian Championship.
Not only do the best Hungarian racers take part in the 10th Hungarian Baja, but also many Dakar winners take part in the race between the 15th an 18th of August.
On Wednesday, August 7th the organizers published the starting list and we can see big names like Krzysztof Holowczyc and Nanim Roma with their X-raid Minis, Nunzio Coffaro from Venezuela (Overdrive Toyota), Miroslav Zapletal (Hummer Proto) - and eventually also Dakar-winner Stéphane Peterhansel with his wife and famous Dakar-participant Andrea Mayer.
We spoke with organizer Zoltan "Zoli" Garamvolgyi before the race. According to Garamvolgyi, the preparation is going well and if they can agree with local authorities then a huge festival will be held to celebrate the jubilee.
MR: What will make this Hungarian Baja special?
Garamvolgyi: "First of all, this will be the 10th Hungarian Baja but what is more important is the series of different races in motor, quad and car category. Racers will compete in FIA, FIM, UEM and MNASZ races.
I think it is fair to say that after WTCC and Formula 1 the Hungarian Baja is the third biggest motorsport race in Hungary. Also it is special that the spectators are allowed to see everything for free and they also may have the chance to meet the best racers in the service park."
MR: Who will take part in the race?
Garamvolgyi: "Beside the best Hungarian racers, a bunch of word class stars will take part in the competition. I can confirm that according to the application forms, four out of the first five on the World Championship table will compete at the 10th Hungarian Baja. The 2013 Dakar winner team, X-raid Mini, will bring its best team to the race.
The 11th time Dakar winner Stephane Peterhansel will come here but it is still an open question whether he takes part in the competiton or he just helps her wife, who will compete in the motorcycle category.
It is sure that Krzysztof Holowczyc, who has already won the European Championship and FIA Baja Cup, will form a partnership with Michel Périn, who is already a 3 time Dakar winner and a 6 time FIA World champion. Moreover Joan Roma, who has been one of the most successful Mini drivers in the past few years, will race with a car and his navigator will be Andreas Schulz, who has already won the Dakar for 2 times."
MR: Which ones are the furthest countries where racers come from?
Garamvolgyi: "Nunzio Coffaro and Daniel Meneses will come from Venezuela. They are supported by the Belgian Overdrive Racing and they will probably compete with their famous Toyota Hilux. Miroslav Zapletal and his navigator, Maciej Marton, will also take part. They are the fifth on the orld Championship table. They have already won in Hungary in 2009 and they won the Romanian Baja back in June with their Hummer H3.
So far, we have received applications from 30 countries but that can chane until the race. Beside the foreign stars, all the Hungarian racers are expected to take part except Balazs Szalai, who has a bad allergy and flu."
MR: How many big names will take part in the motor and quad categories?
Garamvolgyi: "All the best Hungarians will take part, for example: Lajos Horvath, Richard Hodola, Barna Toth and also Matthias Somfai, who is preparing for his first Dakar. But beside them, the Italian Alessandro Ruoso and Alex Zanotti, the Portugal Rui Costa and the Polish Lukasz Laskawiec will take part."
MR: How many women will enter the race besides Andrea Mayer?
Garamvolgyi: "Beside her, the French quad racer, Stephanie Sanchez and the Vadász Racing Team’s navigator will be Nikolett Szoke."
MR: In the last two years, Gyor hosted the Hungarian Baja. Why is it Pápa this time?
Garamvolgyi: "We had a great time in Gyor but the racers and the teams wanted to go back to the landscapes of North Balaton. Pápa and also all the surrounding cities supported the Hungarian Baja and if we manage to struck a deal with the authorities then we will organize a festival which will be dedicated to this race. We will organize the award ceremony at the Várkert Beach."
2013/08/08 | 21:13 CET | ARTICLE: MR/HS/MOLNAR