Sebastien Ogier drove out in the World Rally Championship in Sardinia on Saturday’s last previous EK. Esapekka Lappi directly admitted that he drove EK to the finish line in peace, because the team order would take away the victory anyway.
In the World Rally Championship in Sardinia, there was a wild drama on the last special stage on Saturday, ie EK 14.
The Toyota that drove at the top of the rally Sebastien Ogier had already broken the front of his car on EK 12 after driving too hard through a deep puddle of water.
At EK 14, the conditions continued to be treacherous. Dani Sordo benefited from his first starting position and set the record time.
For those coming behind, the route became even muddier and more slippery. The leading man Ogier crashed out right at the beginning of the special stage and was unable to continue the journey. Ogier’s drive out said everything about the circumstances.
After Ogier’s outing with the Hyundai drivers Esapekka in Lapland and With Thierry Neuville were the keys to a double win. However, Neuville, who started the route earlier, did not see that Ogier had driven out. He was the second fastest in the special test, 5.7 seconds behind Sordo.
During the rally, there was talk of whether at some point in the race Hyundai would issue a team order that Lapin should let the team’s number one driver Neuvi pass. Lappi left for EK 14 still leading Neuville by three seconds.
Lapland is driving for Hyundai in his first season, Neuville has been a Hyundai man for years. In the World Series situation, Neuville is fifth, Lapland is sixth.
Even earlier in the day, Lappi did not directly comment on a possible team order.
– Well, that’s it. We won’t talk about it any more, he smiled, for example Ilta-Sanom.
At the end of EK 14, however, there was nothing left to worry about. Lappi calmly drove to the finish line of the special stage to ensure a double victory. Lappi lost to Sordo, the fastest in EK, by 32.6 seconds and to his teammate Neuville by 26.9 seconds. Neuville took the lead of the rally by a clear margin.
– There’s no point in trying when you don’t need to win, however, Lappi, who seemed frustrated, shook C More in the broadcast after reaching the finish line.
– Then when Sebastien interrupted, it’s a clear game that we will drive quietly, Lappi continued even later.
Kalle Rovanperä came third in the rally. He lost to Sordo with EK 14 by no less than 52.2 seconds.
– I was careful. I honestly don’t have any tires left. The soft tires are in poor condition and I have one hard tire on the car, so you can imagine it doesn’t work that well, Rovanperä explained.
On Saturday, one more special test will be run, which starts at 19:44. follows the MM rally moment by moment in this article.
1. Thierry Neuville, Hyundai 3.03.13.8
2. Esapekka Lappi, Hyundai +23.8
3. Kalle Rovanperä, Toyota +1.35,7
4. Elfyn Evans, Toyota +5.24,2
5. Dani Sordo, Hyundai +6.17,1
6. Adrien Fourmaux, Ford WRC2 +7.51,7
7. Andreas Mikkelsen, Skoda WRC2 +7.09,9