Opel celebrates fourth consecutive European Championship title

Sunday, September 23, 2018
  • The Latvian Mārtiņš Sesks wins the title in the FIA ERC Junior U27 in the ADAM R2 prematurely
  • Team mate Tom Kristensson celebrates his first JERC race victory at the Rally Poland
  • The ADAC Opel Rally Junior Team also leads the team classification


Rüsselsheim/Munich/Mikolajki. The ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team has completely cleared at the Rally Poland. Although he was without points at the penultimate round of the European Junior Rally Championship (FIA ERC Junior U27), the 19-year-old Latvian Mārtiņš Sesks prematurely clinched the fourth title win in Europe's leading junior rally championship for Opel in a row. Meanwhile team mate Tom Kristensson (27, Sweden) celebrated his first race victory in the FIA ERC Junior U27 and is thus clearly on course for runner-up before the finale. Last but not least, the ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team has a good chance of winning the team classification.


The gravel spectacle around Mikolajki in Masuria was not at all to the taste of the newly crowned European Champion and his co-driver Renārs Francis. Already in the fourth special stage on Saturday, Sesks overturned in the lead and had to abandon the first leg. After a lightning repair of the ADAM R2 by the ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team, the young Balte was able to get involved again the next day and did so very successfully with two best times in a row - until he again left the right path in the 12th special stage and finally had to tick off the Polish Rallye as a zero number.


The points mode of the FIA ERC Junior U27 wants only four of the six individual results to go into the final classification. This means that Sesks will completely cancel the Rally Poland and will not be able to catch up at the finale in Latvia in mid-October. In order to catch up with his team-mate, Kristensson would have had to win both stage classifications in addition to the rally victory in Poland. However, as he had to give way to his Spanish opponent Efrén Llarena on Sunday, Kristensson "only" scored 38 total points instead of the possible 39 - one too little to challenge Sesks in the title fight.


Accordingly, Mārtiņš Sesks commented on the biggest success of his career with mixed feelings: "I'm really happy about winning the title. Together with the ADAC Opel Rallye Junior Team we were once again able to prove the enormous potential of the ADAM R2. But of course I would have preferred to celebrate this triumph with a good result. Unfortunately this rally didn't go according to plan for us. We were fast, but I made two mistakes too many. I'm very sorry, especially for my guys who repaired the broken car on Saturday and made it possible for us to restart on Sunday. I'd like to thank everyone for their tireless efforts. Without them this title win would have been impossible."


Meanwhile Tom Kristensson and co-driver Henrik Appelskog beamed from both cheeks. "That was overdue", commented last year's ADAC Opel Rally Cup Champion his first JERC race victory for the ADAC Opel Rally Junior Team. "I really enjoyed this rally with its super-fast, fluid gravel special stages. Being at the absolute limit here with the ADAM R2 was a real pleasure. The fight with Llarena and my teammate was incredibly fun. It's a shame that Mārtiņš was out prematurely, I would have liked to have fought it out with him right to the end. I am very happy for him. He was strong all year round and deserved this title".

Opel Motorsport Director Jörg Schrott was also pleased with the positive outcome of the gravel spectacle: "Congratulations to Mārtiņš, which has undergone extreme development over the course of the season. With all his youth he is not only very talented but also an intelligent guy who is willing to learn and works hard on himself. I'm also happy for Tom, who had to cope with some setbacks this season, but once again proved what he's capable of, especially on gravel. And of course the fourth European Junior Champion title in a row is the best proof of the enormous power of the ADAC Opel Rally Junior Team and of course our ADAM R2".


The sixth and last event of the season of the FIA ERC Junior U27 will take place from 12th to 14th October as part of the rally Liepāja around the Latvian port of the same name. The season finale will be a real home game for the newly crowned European Junior Champion: Mārtiņš' father Uldis Sesks is the mayor of Liepāja.


Stand FIA ERC Junior U27 nach 5 von 6 Läufen (inkl. Streichresultat):

1. Sesks 132 Punkte (Europameister). 2. Kristensson 111. 3. Llarena 97. 4. Gago 67. 5. Vita 67. 6. Wagner 60. 7. Munnings 53. 8. Broz 37. 9. Hokkanen 36. 10. Stengg 21. 11. Blach Nuñez 15.



press contact


ADAC registered association.

Oliver Runschke, Phone: +49 (0) 89 7676 6965, E-Mail: oliver.runschke@adac.de

Kay-Oliver Langendorff, Phone: +49 (0) 89 7676 6936, E-Mail: kay.langendorff@adac.de


Opel Motorsport

Marcus Lacroix, Phone: +49 (0) 172 7404562, E-Mail: ml@opel-motorsport.com






Reproduced by courtesy of Opel Motorsport.

Picture Copyright: Opel Motorsport www.opel-motorsport.com


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