Toyota Gazoo Racing’s Kalle Rovanpera says he had a really good feeling with the Yaris WRC on the shakedown stage for Rally Estonia on Thursday. The Finn leads Hyundai’s Craig Breen by 0.1s and speaking following the action he said:

“Stage one was really tricky, so the plan was just to get through it without any mistakes, but we also managed to do a quick time. I had a really good feeling with the car in shakedown. This year there’s a lot of new stages and many of them are quite narrow and technical, so it’s not so fast all the time and you have to be really precise with the pacenotes. It’s really important for us to have a clean race and hopefully fight among the top places.”

Championship leader Sebastien Ogier commented after ending the shakedown in tenth place saying:

“We know we will have a tough job ahead of us opening the road this weekend: In shakedown we saw the road evolve quite a lot with each run, and in the opening super special it was already very slippery. But we’ll give our best like always and see what is possible. This is definitely a very fast rally, but the new stages we have this year are challenging with much narrower sections in the forests, and I think the first pass could be a bit tricky. It’s a longer event than last year, and we’re definitely much more prepared this time, so let’s see what we can do.”

Elfyn Evans ended the day in 17th place and speaking following the action he said:

“Tonight’s short super special stage was quite tight and twisty, but it was good to get started. The general feeling in the car in shakedown was good. We worked on some setup options for the second pass of stages and it all felt good, so I’m looking forward to start the rally for real tomorrow. There is definitely a real mix of stages in this year’s rally: some more narrow and technical sections than perhaps we’ve seen in the past but still some very fast places too, of course. We’re ready to give it our all and fight for the top positions.”

Jari-Matti Latvala (Team Principal) commented saying:

“We’re happy with the opening stage this evening, as the guys did good runs with no mistakes. The stage was cleaning and improving as the cars went through but all of the gaps are still small and we’re ready to start the rally proper tomorrow. In the hot and dry weather here, we can expect our first two cars on the road – Seb and Elfyn – to suffer tomorrow from the amount of loose gravel on top of the surface. But Kalle is in a good position to fight and we could see in shakedown that he had good speed – as did Takamoto too. Generally everybody was happy after shakedown so we know the car is good for the rally and I really hope we can challenge for the victory here.

Share This