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KMS Racing’s Luhtaniemi scored a podium on his return – SM3 drivers with valuable experience

14.01.2023 / KMS Racing Press

KMS Racing crews competed in the weekend’s Arctic Lapland Rally with good results. Jani Luhtaniemi scored a FRC2 category podium after a two-year hiatus, and FRC3 driver Daniel Poláśek and Joonas Ojala made decent debuts on the snowy stages of Lapland.

Making his four-wheel-drive debut in FRC2 category, Jani Luhtaniemi scored a podium on his return to rallying. The new category and car were a solid match for Luhtaniemi, and the 26-year-old didn’t hold back after the start.

-I’m relieved. The rally was challenging for us since the start. A big thank you to the KMS service crew and our supporters for making it possible to drive here, Luhtaniemi commented at the finish.

Making his snow debut this weekend, 23-year-old Czech driver Daniel Poláśek drove a solid day on Friday finishing sixth in category by the night’s service. Poláśek continued his ever improving pace on Saturday morning, but was forced to retire after running into a snowbank in SS9 – Heinunkierto.

-It’s a shame this happened, but it’s motorsport. I was a bit too optimistic with my pace notes. Our pace kept improving throughout the rally, and we’re already expecting the next round in Kuopio. Arctic rally was an awesome experience nevertheless! Polasek said.

Making his debut in Rally4-category, 16-year-old Joonas Ojala drove a clean Friday finishing the day seventh in FRC3 category. A steady and sure pace elevated the young Finn into fourth in category at the finish.

KMS Racing team principal Jussi Kumpumäki reflected his team’s opening rally of 2023:

-A great achievement from Jani. Third place in a highly contested category after almost 2,5 years hiatus of driving from notes. Daniel’s DNF was unfortunate, but these things happen once you start to find your pace and we’re here to learn. Joonas scored some solid points and finishing a long rally such as this is a good way to get competitive kilometres before the next round in Kuopio.

KMS Racing continues its season in Kuopio in three weeks time. The international team also attends another event on the other side of Gulf of Finland, as Otepää Rally is held on the same weekend.

-We’ll continue in Kuopio with Joonas and Daniel. We are also competing in Otepää Rally in Estonia the same weekend, so it’s going to be a busy one, Kumpumäki says.

 

Arctic Lapland Rally FRC2-category results:

1.

Benjamin Korhola

48:12,4

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Henri Hokkala

48:35,1

+22,7

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Jani Luhtaniemi

48:48,5

+36,1

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Ville Ruokanen

48:49,3

+36,9

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Toni Herranen

50:16,5

+2:04,1

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

Arctic Lapland Rally FRC3-category results:  

1.

Tuomas Välilä

51:48,6

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Justus Räikkönen

52:29,1

+40,5

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

3.

Jooa Iivari

52:43,0

+54,4

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

4.

Nao Otake

53:09,3

+1:20,7

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

5.

Mille Johansson

54:06,1

+2:17,5

Ford Fiesta Rally4

SWE

6.

Daniel Poláśek

55:06,7

+3:18,1

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

7.

Joonas Ojala

55:59,4

+4:10,8

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

Special stage results in FRC2:

SS1 – Jyrhämäjärvi – 28,99 km

1.

Henri Hokkala

13:23,7

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Benjamin Korhola

13:30,3

+6,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Ville Ruokanen

13:33,3

+9,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Jani Luhtaniemi

13:34,5

+10,8

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Toni Herranen

13:42,8

+19,1

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

SS2 – Mäntyvaara 1 – 3,50 km

1.

Henri Hokkala

2:47,6

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Ville Ruokanen

2:48,1

+0,5

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Benjamin Korhola

2:48,5

+0,9

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Jani Luhtaniemi

2:53,0

+5,4

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Toni Herranen

2:55,3

+7,7

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

SS3 – Kaihuavaara – 28,20 km

1.

Benjamin Korhola

15:35,4

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Ville Ruokanen

15:45,0

+9,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Jani Luhtaniemi

15:52,8

+17,4

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Henri Hokkala

15:56,4

+21,0

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Eamonn Kelly

16:41,3

+1:05,9

Ford Fiesta Rally3

IRE

 

SS4 – Kivalo-Siikakämä – 27,13 km

1.

Henri Hokkalaa

13:26,6

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Benjamin Korhola

13:29,8

+3,2

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Jani Luhtaniemi

13:37,4

+10,8

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Toni Herranen

13:48,2

+21,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Ville Ruokanen

13:49,9

+23,3

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

SS5 – Mäntyvaara 2 – 3,50 km

1.

Benjamin Korhola

2:48,4

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Henri Hokkala

2:50,8

+2,4

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Jani Luhtaniemi

2:50,8

+2,4

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Toni Herranen

2:51,6

+3,2

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Ville Ruokanen

2:53,0

+4,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

SS6 – Siikakämä – 26,15 km

1.

Benjamin Korhola

12:38,4

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Henri Hokkala

12:39,0

+0,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Ville Ruokanen

12:47,2

+8,8

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Toni Herranen

12:48,5

+10,1

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Jani Luhtaniemi

13:04,2

+25,8

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

SS7 – Aittajärvi – 22,69 km

1.

Benhamin Korhola

11:27,0

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Ville Ruokanen

11:36,5

+9,5

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Toni Herranen

11:45,2

+18,2

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Jani Luhtaniemi

11:46,1

+19,1

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Eamonn Kelly

11:57,6

+30,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

IRE

 

SS8 – Ounasvaara – 1,65 km

1.

Ville Ruokanen

1:50,8

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Jani Luhtaniemi

1:51,6

+0,8

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Henri Hokkala

1:52,5

+1,7

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Henri Timonen

1:52,8

+2,0

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Toni Herranen

1:53,5

+2,7

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

SS9 – Heinunkierto – 25,00 km

1.

Benjamin Korhola

14:09,2

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Toni Herranen

14:13,4

+4,2

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Ville Ruokanen

14:14,9

+5,7

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Jani Luhtaniemi

14:22,8

+13,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Henri Timonen

14:45,0

+35,8

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

SS10 – Sarriojärvi – 33,18 km

1.

Benjamin Korhola

19:19,5

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Henri Hokkala

19:33,8

+14,3

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Toni Herranen

19:38,6

+19,1

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Jani Luhtaniemi

19:45,4

+25,9

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Ville Ruokanen

19:45,8

+26,3

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

SS 11 – Ristilampi – 31,51 km

1.

Toni Herranen

16:05,6

 

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

2.

Benjamin Korhola

16:07,5

+1,9

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

3.

Henri Hokkala

16:16,0

+10,4

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

4.

Ville Ruokanen

16:28,2

+22,6

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

5.

Jani Luhtaniemi

16:33,8

+28,2

Ford Fiesta Rally3

FIN

 

 

Special stage results in FRC3:

SS1 – Jyrhämäjärvi – 28,99 km

1.

Tuomas Välilä

14:02,4

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Jooa Iivari

14:15,9

+13,5

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

3.

Yuki Yamamoto

14:15,9

+13,5

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

4.

Niko Patajoki

14:22,7

+20,3

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

5.

Justus Räikkönen

14:32,2

+29,8

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

6.

Joonas Ojala

14:33,3

+30,9

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

9.

Daniel Poláśek

14:51,1

+48,7

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

 

SS2 – Mäntyvaara 1 – 3,50 km

1.

Jooa Iivari

3:09,9

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Tuomas Välilä

3:10,6

+0,7

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

3.

Justus Räikkönen

3:13,4

+3,5

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

4.

Niko Patajoki

3:14,0

+4,1

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

5.

Leevi Lassila

3:17,8

+7,9

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

10.

Daniel Poláśek

3:20,2

+10,3

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

11.

Joonas Ojala

3:28,1

+18,2

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS3 – Kaihuavaara – 28,20 km

1.

Tuomas Välilä

16:47,6

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Justus Räikkönen

17:02,8

+15,2

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

3.

Nao Otake

17:09,2

+21,6

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

4.

Jooa Iivari

17:23,2

+35,6

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

5.

Mille Johansson

17:47,4

+59,8

Ford Fiesta Rally4

SWE

6.

Daniel Poláśek

18:10,3

+1:22,7

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

7.

Joonas Ojala

18:13,5

+1:25,9

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS4 – Kivalo-Siikakämä – 27,13 km

1.

Tuomas Välilä

14:26,9

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Justus Räikkönen

14:29,8

+2,9

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

3.

Nao Otake

14:38,3

+11,4

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

4.

Jooa Iivari

14:43,9

+17,0

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

5.

Niko Patajoki

15:00,7

+33,8

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

7.

Daniel Poláśek

15:23,8

+56,9

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

8.

Joonas Ojala

16:21,0

+1:54,1

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS5 – Mäntyvaara 2 – 3,50 km

1.

Jooa Iivari

3:10,1

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Justus Räikkönen

3:10,9

+0,8

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

3.

Mille Johansson

3:11,1

+1,0

Ford Fiesta Rally4

SWE

4.

Niko Patajoki

3:13,6

+3,5

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

5.

Nao Otake

3:18,8

+8,7

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

7.

Daniel Poláśek

3:21,3

+11,2

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

8.

Joonas Ojala

3:23,5

+13,4

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS6 – Siikakämä – 26,15 km

1.

Leevi Lassila

13:07,0

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Nao Otake

13:30,5

+23,5

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

3.

Jooa Iivari

13:32,4

+25,4

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

4.

Justus Räikkönen

13:35,0

+28,0

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

5.

Niko Patajoki

13:40,8

+33,8

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

8.

Daniel Poláśek

14:04,1

+57,1

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

12.

Joonas Ojala

17:55,5

+4:48,5

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS7 – Aittajärvi – 22,69 km

1.

Leevi Lassila

12:16,3

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Yuki Yamamoto

12:22,8

+6,2

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

3.

Nao Otake

12:31,3

+15,0

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

4.

Justus Räikkönen

12:35,1

+18,8

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

5.

Niko Patajoki

12:37,1

+20,8

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

7.

Daniel Poláśek

12:42,0

+25,7

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

8.

Joonas Ojala

13:02,9

+46,6

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS8 – Ounasvaara – 1,65 km

1.

Nao Otake

2:00,5

 

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

2.

Hikaru Kogure

2:03,3

+2,8

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

3.

Leevi Lassila

2:03,6

+3,1

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

4.

Justus Räikkönen

2:03,8

+3,3

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

5.

Mille Johansson

2:04,1

+3,6

Ford Fiesta Rally4

SWE

6.

Daniel Poláśek

2:04,7

+4,2

Ford Fiesta Rally4

CZE

9.

Joonas Ojala

2:09,6

+9,1

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS9 – Heinunkierto – 25,00 km

1.

Leevi Lassila

15:05,7

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Mille Johansson

15:08,3

+2,6

Ford Fiesta Rally4

SWE

3.

Yuki Yamamoto

15:21,6

+15,9

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

4.

Justus Räikkönen

15:24,3

+18,6

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

5.

Nao Otake

15:39,3

+33,6

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

7.

Joonas Ojala

15:45,5

+39,8

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS10 – Sarriojärvi – 33,18 km

1.

Leevi Lassila

20:44,9

 

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

2.

Yuki Yamamoto

21:00,3

+15,4

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

3.

Justus Räikkönen

21:09,3

+24,4

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

4.

Niko Pajajoki

21:33,4

+48,5

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

5.

Joonas Ojala

21:54,8

+1:09,9

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

SS11 – Ristilampi – 31,51 km

1.

Yuki Yamamoto

17:09,7

 

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

2.

Hikaru Kogure

17:24,9

+15,2

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

3.

Niko Patajoki

17:28,8

+19,1

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

4.

Justus Räikkönen

17:46,2

+36,5

Peugeot 208 Rally4

FIN

5.

Nao Otake

17:47,3

+37,6

Renault Clio Rally4

JPN

6.

Joonas Ojala

17:47,4

+37,7

Ford Fiesta Rally4

FIN

 

Photo: Merita Mäkinen

Score top 5

1. Roope Korhonen / Anssi Viinikka 45 points LMM (Rally2)
2. Mikko Heikkilä / Kristian Temonen 34 points MäntsMK (Rally2)
3. Benjamin Korhola / Sebastian Virtanen 34 points VihUA (Rally2)
4. Anssi Rytkönen / Mikael Korhonen 26 points KoMoKe (R5)
5. Teemu Asunmaa / Ville Mannisenmäki 25 points AlavUA (Rally2)

< See all >

Calendar 2024

1) 12.-13.1. SM Auto Sorsa Riihimäki-Ralli, Riihimäki
2) 1.-3.2. 59. Arctic Lapland Rally, Rovaniemi
3) 8.-9.3. SM Tuuri Ralli, Alavus
4) 24.-25.5. SM Mad-Croc Länsirannikon Ralli, Turku
5) 14.-15.6. SM Pohjanmaa Ralli, Seinäjoki
6) 23.-24.8. SM Ralli Lahti, Lahti
7) 4.-5.10. SM Ralli Kitee, Kitee

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