Hyundai Motorsports WRC Team’s Dani Sordo who took victory here last year has taken over the lead of Rally Italia Sardegna after the fourth stage on Friday, taking the lead from M-Sport’s Teemu Suninen by 7.5s.
Sebastien Ogier is third for Toyota just ahead of championship leader and team mate Elfyn Evans. Thierry Neuville is fith just ahead of Kalle Rovanpera and Gus Greensmith while Pierre Louis Loubet is eighth overall.
Defending champion Ott Tanak who has had mysterious issues today ended the session 9th overall just ahead of Ole Solberg.
Following the action the drivers said:
Car #33 E. Evans – S. Martin (Toyota Yaris WRC): “Pretty satisfied overall. It is hard to know in here, I just get the feeling it might clean again now in the second pass. I am quite happy with my morning”
Car #17 S. Ogier – J. Ingrassia (Toyota Yaris WRC): “So far it is working well. We have to keep going. Much more grip than this morning. I enjoyed it and the car is working pretty well”
Car #8 O. TÃ¤nak – M. JÃ¤rveoja (Hyundai i20 CoupÃ© WRC): [no words again]
Car #69 K. Rovanpera – J. Halttunen (Toyota Yaris WRC):”The first test today was somehow OK but it has been a difficult loop. We made the wrong tyre choice, we did not need the hard ones at all. The setup was not good I was struggling with the car. Difficult loop”
Car #11 T. Neuville – N. Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC): “No [no adjustments] In the first pass we were faster. This stage should suit better our car. There is some cleaning and we should be faster than this, we will try to improve. This is not where we want to be. There are some new stages this afternoon with a bit more cleaning. We will get our chances to get back to Elfyn and Sebastian”
Car #3 T. Suninen – J. Lehtinen (Ford Fiesta WRC): [does not speak]
Car #44 G. Greensmith – E. Edmondson (Ford Fiesta WRC): “Not too bad. I was really trying in there. But when it gets rough I am not just quite as happy. If you had asked me if I had been happy now back in Estonia, I would have said yes. Still lots to work on.”
Car #18 T. Katsuta – D. Barritt (Toyota Yaris WRC): [off – down a ditch, crew ok]
Car #6 D. Sordo – C. Del Barrio (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC): “[7.5s lead] It is good, I am happy. The car is really nice to drive, we are working on the setup and diffs, maps and all. The team has made a really strong work to the car during the holidays, I am happy with it.”
Car #7 P.L. Loubet â€“ V. Landais (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC): “We had a [….?] in the previous stage, so I was a bit careful not to make any mistakes” [back of the car damaged]
Car #23 P. Tidemand – P. Barth (Skoda Fabia Evo): “We are here so far without any problems. Tyres went a little off in this stage Everything is working well, but we can improve the pace a bit. We do not have any experience here. We will try to keep going like this”
Car #24 M. Ostberg – T. Eriksen (Citroen C3): “The championship is not lost. I am still the only one to have won three events. It is not lost. I would like to secure it this weekend and not to be back fighting for the rest of the rallies. That is how it is, I did my absolute best. I did some steps on my rear-wheel driving. We managed to be 2-3s faster per kilometer now on the last one. If I can do that progress with 4WD I would be very happy”
Car #25 A. Fourmaux – R. Jamoul (Ford Fiesta MkII): “I am happy because this was the most rough part of the rally these four stages. We had a puncture this morning here. We are still here. We were leading WRC2 at the stage before, we need to keep this position. I am happy with the car so we need to continue like that.”