The “Samsonas Rally Utena” started late Saturday afternoon and lasted until late night. Participants had to master a total of six special stages – four on gravel and two at night. The young star of the Norwegian rally – Karl Peder Nordstrand with the Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo – passed this test best.
On the special stages of Samsonas Rally Utena, an uncompromising fight started from the very beginning. Without waiting for anything, the hosts of this rally – M. Samsonas and E. Snitkas, driving the Škoda Fabia N5+, stormed to the front. It is true that the second part of the day was not so successful for the Lithuanian rally champions – the generator belt fell and the slippery asphalt of Utena became the reason for the fall to the fifth place. The Estonian crew – Egon Kaur / A.Birjukov with the Ford Fiesta KMS Proto – temporarily took the lead from Martynas, but it did not last long – K.P. Nordstrand took advantage of the dark streets of Utena to enter Sunday as the rally leader with a nine-second lead over Kaur. Latvian E. Blūms, who is racing in Lithuania for the fifth time this year, and his co-driver D. Eglitis are in third place after six special stages. They drive an outdated, but still very fast Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX and are almost thirteen seconds behind the leader. In fourth place – were V. Jurkevičius and A. Paliukėnas, who returned to the rally after a very serious incident. The crew of Vladas and Aisvydas with the Škoda Fabia Rally2 Evo is fifteen seconds behind the leader, while the already mentioned crew of M.Samsonas / E.Snitkas is a few moments behind the SRT crew.
G. Notkus was eliminated from the fight for the victory of the rally when he suffered a puncture on the Škoda Fabia R5 in the first turn of the first special stage and had to stop for a change. This cost the Panevėžys native more than three minutes. Due to crew errors and technical defects, seventeen crews did not reach the finish line on Saturday. The battles of the “Samsonas Rally Utena” will continue on Sunday from early morning, and the participants can expect eight more stages. Today’s channels of the Lithuanian and Latvian Rally Championship will be joined by the participants of the Lithuanian Auto Rally Sprint Championship. The participants of Samsonas Rally Utena will receive their prizes at 20:30, immediately followed by the Jovani concert.
Rally pass for Samsonas Rally Utena 2023 can be purchased at the stages