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LATVALA CONFIRMS TOYOTA’S RALLY PACE

WRC PLUS A FULL

LATVALA CONFIRMS TOYOTA’S RALLY PACE.

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* Toyota’s Latvala wins Power Stage of Rally Poland 
* Yaris in the thick of action as rally has ten lead changes 
* Yaris’ pace bodes well for team’s ‘home’ event in Finland

5 July 2017

Toyota Yaris WRC driver Jari-Matti Latvala has won the final Power Stage of Rally Poland to advance to third place in the world championship after eight of 13 rounds.

Winning the final stage earned the Finn five bonus points and showed what might have been in one of the season’s fastest gravel rallies – but this year affected by torrential rain and with some sections deeply rutted.

Latvala, co-driven by Miikka Attila, led the tightly contested rally from special stages 3 to 7 and claimed a total of four stage victories, in an event where the overall lead changed ten times.

He was third overall, just 13.3 seconds behind rally leader and eventual winner Belgium’s Thierry Neuville (Hyundai) after 15 stages, when a technical problem sidelined him on day three.

Latvala re-joined the event on the final day, day four, taking a stage second place and then winning the Power Stage in his Yaris WRC.

Teammate Juho Hänninen finished tenth overall but Esapekka Lappi, the team’s star performer in the last rally in Sardinia, retired after he struck a rock on the edge of the road, damaging his suspension.

The next championship rally begins on July 27 in Finland, which is the Toyota Gazoo WRC team’s base, and famed for the jumps on its fast gravel roads.

Team principal Tommi Mäkinen said Latvala showed great speed through the rally and that pace was a positive heading to Finland.

“We achieved the objective we had for the final day with Jari-Matti taking maximum points in the Power Stage and Juho completing the rally in the top ten. Jari-Matti came back well after the disappointment of retiring on Saturday.”

Latvala said it was important to fight back with the Power Stage victory.

“I was focusing a lot before the stage, going through all the corners and braking points in my mind, and it paid off. We scored five more points and it gives me confidence again that our car can challenge our rivals in the rallies that are coming up. The five points could still be valuable in the championship.”

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Categories:   RRM ARGENTINA WRC 17 AÑOS

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