What should we think about Esapekka Lapi’s confusing openings? An expert’s blunt verdict on the wretchedness of the stable | Sport

What should we think about Esapekka Lapis confusing openings An

You can listen to Pertti Lappalainen and expert Henri Haapamäki’s summary of the Kenya World Rally Championship below or on Areena. Among other things, Kalle Rovanperä’s dominance, Hyundai’s problems, the twists and turns of the new points calculation system, and the early season’s surprise will become topics of conversation!

The legendary Safari Rally did not leave anyone cold this year either. Stoppages, technical problems, flat tires and dramatic crashes were enough when more than 370 special test kilometers challenged the drivers.

He won the overall competition in style Kalle Rovanperä before his teammate Takamoto Katsuta and Ford’s Adrien Fourmaux.

Hyundai drivers suffered through the weekend with problems, but Ott Tänak and leading the World Series Thierry Neuville with the help of the new scoring system, they collected a hefty 11-point pot from Sunday.

Esapekka Lapin Hyundai played the role of the victim throughout the weekend. Lapland was 12th in the final results.

Sports expert Henri Haapamäki bundles the biggest talking points of the weekend.

Masterful Kalle Rovanperä

Rovanperä decided to win the rally in good time, partly due to other setbacks. The reigning world champion was practically the only driver who did not suffer from major problems during the weekend.

Haapamäki considers the performance excellent when it comes to the longest and perhaps most challenging rally of the series.

– Awesome, perfect performance. Simply avoiding problems would be a great achievement, but on top of that, the speed is on a completely different level compared to others, Haapamäki is amazed.

Rovanperä’s ability to adjust his speed according to the conditions has been praised throughout the rally world. In Safari, he was at best almost 25 seconds off the bottom, but on the other hand, he backed up just when others were taking risks.

The Finnish champion was also quick when he said that the driving, the car or the conditions felt bad.

– Driving hard is not as tiring as it is for others. Driving is not always at one’s limit, so that difficult places do not come as a surprise and you can internalize what you encounter on the road, the expert analysed.

Hyundai failed again in Kenya

The complete opposite was the story at Hyundai. Even the last dreams of a top position in the overall race disappeared when Neuville’s car’s fuel supply broke down on Saturday. Tänak and Lappi already stopped on Friday.

As in previous years, there was a lot of bad luck, for example Lapland experienced unfortunate hits to animals. Haapamäki emphasizes the importance of luck in endurance races like the World Rally Championship in Kenya.

As in previous years, there were also quite a few technical problems during the weekend. The cars could not withstand the demands of the Safari rally.

– It indicates a lack of competence. There have been rumors that mistakes have occurred in the design of the car, which the rules do not allow to be corrected in the middle of the season, says Haapamäki.

Extraordinary openings were heard from Esapekka Lapi on Sunday. First, he criticized that the team did not allow him to stop on Saturday, when the car that had already traveled would have been saved for Sunday.

Later, he said that the car did not have time to be repaired during the short day service.

– There are not enough mechanics. You have to do a lot of work yourself after maintenance, when half of it is left undone. It feels pointless when you don’t get any points, Lappi roared in MTV’s Finnish-language goal interview after EK 17.

Haapamäki does not believe in bigger problems within the team.

– I think it was just “tournament fatigue” at the end of the unlucky competition, Haapamäki states.

He adds that Lappi would certainly have liked to stop on Saturday and save the bangs for Sunday, but for the teams it’s about a broader perspective. The World Cup is marketing for car factories.

– What would it look like if a practically intact car is stopped just so that we can continue better on Sunday, Haapamäki ponders.

Hindsight is partly natural for the driver in moments of heavy and frustrating adversity.

– Then it’s easy to shout that my idea would have been wiser, but these are always big entities, Haapamäki concludes.

The scoring system is confusing

Rovanperä collected 20 MM points from Kenya. The second most points, despite all his difficulties, went to Neuville, who reached a total of 19 points. Elfyn Evans, who collected the fifth most points, got 16 points.

The new point calculation system enabled the Hyundai drivers to attack hard on Sunday and on the other hand “forced” Rovanperä to secure their conditional points, which are distributed based on Saturday’s results.

– If he had wanted to win on Sunday as well, he would have had to risk Saturday’s victory too much, Haapamäki says directly.

By taking three races, there is a possibility to take so-called “prevention wins” more realistically than before. In the overall race, a driver who lost his chance to suspension can, like the Safari rally, claim surprisingly big points on Sunday.

The new system does not value the traditional overall race win, which confuses many sports people.

– I would like to say, why is the victory of the general competition not appreciated, but at the same time the point differences do not grow as big as before, Haapamäki estimates.

The final results of the World Rally Championship in Kenya

World Rally Championship points in Kenya