The roll of honor of the Italian Baja is signed for the first time by Krzystof Holowczyc. The Polish driver, already protagonist of the world and European rally and today of the Cross Country marathons at the wheel of a Nissan Navara, has interrupted the hegemony of the Russian Boris Gadasin, protagonist of the last editions of the classic Friulian off-road vehicle but who on this occasion did not reach the Spilimbergo finish line. Holowczyc won the marathon organized by the Off-road 4X4 Club Pordenone and promoted by the Automobile Club Pordenone, after taking the lead on the first day of the race and dominating the second stage on the two selective sectors named after "Pierre Lartigue".
The Pole won with an advantage of 3'49 "over the runners-up, the Russians Novitskiy - Evtekhov, G Force Proto, and with 6'44" over the Hungarians Fazekas - Maurer aboard a BMW X5, but the Italian drivers did not disfigured in comparison with European specialists.
Indeed, as long as it was in the race, the reigning Italian champion Riccardo Colombo, paired with Rudy Briani, occupied the fifth place overall, driving the Mitsubishi L200 Pick Up at best, marking himself at the top of the Italian ranking. To slow down the Milanese of RalliArt Off-road Division Italy, the loss of water from the ranking radiator took care of it and then the next hit during the second stage. Off stage the Italian ace, it was the Venetian Giovanni Manfrinato who took up the tricolor baton and crossed the finish line in Spilimbergo with his Renault Megane Proto, an off-road vehicle that reported some inconvenience to the engine and the breakage of the left rear axle, finishing seventh overall and first among the Italians.
The Paduan expert sailed by Claudio Condotta is at the first prestigious result in Cross Country, preceding the arrival of the Comasco Maurizio Traglio, second among the Italians together with Erika Pajer on the Nissan Pathfinder. Valter and Stefano Benazzato were also early protagonists of the race, occupying eighth place overall, third for the Italian, with the Peugeot 604 Proto which forced them to retire due to gearbox problems.
Mario Ricci from Romagna is third in the Italian Baja classification, after a race that for him has finally resulted in an excellent result in terms of the national Cross Country. Starting with due caution on a track that does not properly allow a walk along the Tagliamento bank, with the Nissan Navara Ricci has progressively increased the pace and climbed up positions, sharing with Silvano Fattori the excited finale linked to the breakage of the gear lever in the final kilometers before the finish. Among the many stories of the seventeenth edition of the Italian Baja, there is the beautiful fourth Italian place won by the youngest couple in the series. Valentino Bombelli and Daniele Fiorini are among the big names in the Italian, twelfth overall, and first in Group T2 with their Mitsubishi Pajero 3.2 DID. Alex De Angelis and Stefano Fabiano, on their debut with the Suzuki Grand Vitara 2.7 V6, hit the excellent fifth place, just one minute and three from Bombelli. The treacherous track along the Tagliamento, which betrayed Lorenzo Codecà in the initial Super Special forcing him to retire, allowed for an exhilarating challenge for supremacy in the first round of the Suzuki Challenge.
The launch of the eleventh edition of the Grand Vitara 1.9 DDiS one-make trophy was of high competitive depth with excellent performance at the top among standard off-road vehicles. The victory went to the Modenese reigning champion Andrea Lolli, at the end of a very close duel with Giorgio Fichera, the Sicilian champion who, after taking the lead, blamed his opponent's comeback, then crashed and retired in the last kilometers of the race. Massimo Mancusi is second in the single-brand store and Nicola Gelosa is third. At the finish in Spilimbergo, Lolli is second in Group T2. In the TH Group, the Modena-based Bertoni and Vanni won at the wheel of a Suzuki Grand Vitara, with 7'42 "on Colledan - Cagnin on a Pajero Pinin, third Zoppellaro - Gecchele on Daihatsu Rocky 2.8 TD.