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Italian Baja 2007 Special-Newssection (FIA International Baja Cup)

This is the single-news section of the special of the Italian Baja 2007, 1st round of the FIA International Baja Cup. To see all news please use the link under the article or navigate with the left main-navigation.

Italian Baja: Polish Team Lukasz Komornicki and Rafel Marton with Buggy.

Lukasz Komornicki and Rafal Marton are the most experienced Polish cross-country crew in the history. Their best result in the Dakar was 14th spot achieved in their last participation in this rally in 2004. For the past two years the driver - Lukasz Komornicki - was absent from professional cross-country rallying, but kept taking part in other motorsport events, like for example endurance racing in Seat Leon Supercopa. At the same time the co-driver - Rafal Marton - participated in various cross-country events including the Dakar 2007 at the right seat of Unimog truck driven by Grzegorz Baran.

Komornicki and Marton, who will be representing the Diverse Extreme Team, will participate in this Italian rally for the third time. In 2003 they reached the finish at six spot. Their main focus has always been the Dakar, but they also participated in about 20 different cross-country events. They scored second in the Orient Rally 2003, third in the Baja Deutschland 2002 and fourth in the Rallye Tunisia 2003. In 2003 they were fith in the World Cup, proving their high ranking in the world of rally raid.

In their comeback to professional cross-country rallying, the Poles will be using the SMG Buggy, well known from this year’s Dakar, where this car scored 12th place. This is a pure racing machine. Constructed by Philippe Gache in cooperation with famous Jean-Louis Schlesser. It is equipped with a 7 litre Chevrolet V8 engine with 340HP. Tabular space frame is covered with a light-weight kevlar and carbon chassis. The power and torque are transmitted through a three disque AP Racing clutch to a 4 speed sequential Mendeola gearbox. Fuel cell has the capacity of 400 litres. The car weights 1580kg. Despite the lack of one driven axle this buggy is known for its high abilities in marathon and desert rallies. It is much lighter and quicker comparing to the four wheel driven vehicles.

"Our priority for the start in the Italian Baja is practice. We have to get to know the car and learn its off-road and racing abilities. Before the rally we will have some test sessions. We will try to get accustomed to the car as quickly as possible - practice how to change a wheel, get to know on-board instruments and basics of this car’s maintenance. This will be a first opportunity for me to drive a buggy. Until now we competed mainly in Mitsubishi Pajero, in fact the one, which is now used by Josef Sykora from Slovakia. After the Italian Baja we will try to fight for some good result in the Rallye Tunisia. We have a full programme of rallies and test sessions already well set. We will take part in at least three rallies this year. We are also thinking about one more event in order to prepare well for the Dakar, which is our top priority" said Lukasz Komornicki.

"We talked to Philippe Gache for quite a long time and our talks successfully concluded at the finish of this year’s Dakar. It all began from Jean-Louis Schlesser, who designed this buggy and some of its components come from his company. When we still competed in Mitsubishi Pajero we tried to enter Schlesser’s team. This is Jean-Louis Schlesser himself who recommended this SMG Buggy and finally convinced us to this idea. We want to take part in this car in the Rallye Tunisia and Rallye Marocco this year in order to prepare to the Dakar. The decision about the car for the Dakar has not yet been taken, but we are strongly considering this SMG Buggy" said Rafal Marton.

The Polish team will set off with a 23rd number on their black buggy with a Diverse logo. Diverse is a Polish clothing brand targeted to young, energetic, active people. It is also more and more present in motosport. Diverse Extreme Team is a group of unique sportsmen from a wide variety of different disciplines - from snowboard, freeskiing, kitesurfing, through motosport like Freestyle Motocross, Super Bike, and last but not least its own team participating in the Dakar. The team presented three crews at the start of Dakar 2007. The start of Komornicki and Marton is a new step for the company and the Diverse Extreme Team. This most renowned Polish rally raid pair brings new quality to the Team and will become the flag ship of the Diverse Extreme Team.

2007/03/16 | 14:39 CET | Editor: MR/HS/Team Komornicki

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