Fifth event of the Open RBR-LT WRC 2020 season came to Turkey. From 51 entries we got 37 participants who made it to the start line of first special stage. Day one had two special stages for warm up and they was 24,2 kilometers long in total. As always rally requires some victims, first days wasn't and exception.
Newly picked M-Sport Ford WRT driver Roni Lotjonen showed than win in shakedown session was no luck. Fin won both first day stages and earned 16.18 seconds lead over championship leader Remus Diaconescu. Another Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT driver Libor Tomecek holds 3rd place and is just 5.91 seconds behind his teammate.
Echedei Benitez was almost 20 seconds faster than anyone else in WRC 2 category at the opening stage. But in the next one Rally Estonia winner Jan Gais managed to avoid mistakes and won the stage against Spaniard by 6.47 seconds. So after two stages Benitez is leading against Jan by 13.43 seconds, 3rd place is in fragile Evgenyi Panyushkin hands. Fragile because behind Russian there is five more drivers and they all fits in almost 20 seconds interval. WRC 2 gonna have a tight fight in front and behind for sure.
No surprise in JUNIOR WRC category. Jyrki Niemela securely leads by 25.20 seconds after winning both stages by more than 10 seconds against his opponents. Second placed Antonio Ortega is having a company of Nazariy Lebed in 3rd place just 6.87 seconds behind and Maciej Zawisza in 4th place which is 9.76 seconds behind Lebed. All the others are more than 2 minutes away from Jyrki.
Will we have ant 5th different winner in this season Open RBR-LT WRC 2020 championship? Second day, which will be the longest one, should give us more clarity to this.