New route, new rules, proven partners - together with their sponsors PKN ORLEN and star petrol stations, the dream team of Jakub Przygonski and Timo Gottschalk want to finish the most demanding rally in the world standing atop one of the coveted podium positions.
Elmshorn, 4th of January 2021 – Yesterday, on 3rd of January, Jakub “Kuba” Przygonski from Warsaw (Poland) and Timo Gottschalk from Neuruppin (Germany) started this year's Dakar Rally in Jeddah, Saudi Arabia once again as a well-rehearsed team – this time in a 2021 Toyota Hilux. The rally distance of 7643 kilometres, of which 4767 kilometres are special stages, will be an opportunity for them to put all of their skills to the test.
The Dakar Rally has found a new home in Saudi Arabia, after being held there for the first time last year. While the 2020 competition could be described as an initial journey of discovery, the 2021 route will be a far more challenging exploratory tour. The stages will feature a number of sand and dune stretches, as well as very rocky tracks, which will push the drivers to their limits. The roadbook will also be handed out minutes before the start of the rally, in order to test the co-drivers' navigation skills to the extreme. In return, the number of high-speed passages has been significantly reduced, and there is even a speed limit of 90 km/h for particularly dangerous passages.
These challenges suit Jakub Przygonski and Timo Gottschalk to a T. “The 'Dakar' is without a doubt the highlight of the marathon rally season. We want to bring home a top result, but we also know that there will be very strong competition", explained Gottschalk. "If we can get into a good rhythm, then a good result – a place in the top ten or top five – should be possible. With this being the second year of the Dakar Rally in Saudi Arabia, the bar will also be higher in terms of terrain – it will be anything but easy."
The programme features twelve stages, with two circuits and a marathon route, before the rally heads back to Jeddah on 15/1. PKN ORLEN and star are supporting the team to ensure the two racing professionals will be right at the front of the pack. The Polish mineral oil and energy corporation has been at the start for more than 20 years. “Motorsport, and the Dakar Rally in particular, is an important component of the entire ORLEN Group's marketing activities. The joint commitment is part of PKN ORLEN's international brand strategy and bolsters awareness of the ORLEN umbrella brand", explained Oskar Skiba, member of the management team of ORLEN Germany and its star petrol station brand.
Timo Gottschalk added: “Having strong partners like star and ORLEN by your side is truly invaluable. The two are emerging brands in the German market. They are going full throttle to further expand and be successful – just like us. Our mentalities are a perfect match."
Press release_2021 Dakar Rally - PKN ORLEN and star to drive with Przygonski Gottschalk.pdf
star – a strong brand from ORLEN Deutschland GmbH
star is the petrol station brand of ORLEN Deutschland GmbH, which has been on the German market since 2003 and is operating more than 580 petrol stations. The company, which is based in Elmshorn near Hamburg, is part of the Polish oil and energy group PKN ORLEN S.A., which is the largest enterprise in Central Eastern Europe (CEE), with an annual turnover of EUR 26 billion in 2019.
PKN ORLEN is a leading player on the fuel and energy market and is listed in prestigious global rankings such as Fortune Global 500, Platts TOP250 and Thompson Reuters TOP100.
The Group owns state-of-the-art integrated infrastructure, capable of producing more than 35 million tonnes of various crude oil types per annum and of marketing its products through the CEE-region’s largest network of more than 2,800 modern petrol stations. PKN ORLEN’s offering includes over 50 top-quality petrochemical and refining products sold in more than 90 countries around the world on 6 continents. 55 percent of the company's revenues are generated outside the country.
For the last few years, ORLEN has been established as the most valuable brand in Poland. PKN ORLEN is also the only company in the region that has been awarded the prestigious title of ‘The Most Ethical Company’ for the sixth time in a row by the American Ethisphere Institute.
ORLEN Deutschland GmbH
Telephone: +49 (0)40-2022888616