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    Rally Italia Sardegna – Review – Lappi and TOYOTA GAZOO Racing on the podium in Sardinia

    June 10, 2018
    Esapekka Lappi has finished in a fine third place on Rally Italia Sardegna to score his first podium of the 2018 FIA World Rally Championship season: a result that moves the Toyota Yaris WRC driver up to fourth in the drivers’ championship standings. Lappi began the final day of the rally with a margin of just more than a minute over the fourth-placed driver. This allowed him to take a cautious approach to the final four stages, securing the second podium finish of his WRC career by 58.9 seconds and achieving his stated pre-event target of improving upon the fourth place he managed on the same event in 2017. His TOYOTA GAZOO Racing World Rally Team colleagues Jari-Matti Latvala and Ott Tänak also scored points in seventh and ninth overall respectively, having restarted the event under Rally 2 rules. Latvala had been battling with Lappi for third position throughout Saturday until a problem forced him to stop on the road section back to evening service. Tänak was also in the top three when he retired on Friday’s last stage with damage after a heavy landing but fought his way back into the top 10 and remains third in the drivers’ standings. Quotes: Jari-Matti Latvala (Driver car 7) “It was good to be able to get back out on the stages today after the frustration of yesterday. The feeling in the car was good and the times were pretty good, even though we were saving the tyres. Unfortunately, on the Power Stage I stalled the engine in one corner: I went too quick into a left-hander and the ruts were quite deep. I really wanted a podium here but I will try to have a positive break and be ready to fight in Finland.” PROVISONAL FINAL RESULT, RALLY ITALIA SARDEGNA 1 Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) 3h29m18.7s 2 Sebastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (Ford Fiesta WRC) +0.7s 3 Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm (Toyota Yaris WRC) +1m56.3s 4 Hayden Paddon/Seb Marshall (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +2m55.2s 5 Mads Ostberg/Torstein Eriksen (Citroen C3 WRC) +3m10.9s 6 Craig Breen/Scott Martin (Citroen C3 WRC) +4m31.7s 7 Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (Toyota Yaris WRC) +11m22.1s 8 Jan Kopecky/Pavel Dresler (Skoda Fabia R5) +13m14.6s 9 Ott Tänak/Martin Järveoja (Toyota Yaris WRC) +13m18.2s 10 Teemu Suninen/Mikko Markkula (Ford Fiesta WRC) +15m30.4s (Results as of 20:30 on Sunday, for the latest results please visit www.wrc.com) What’s next? After the WRC’s summer break, round eight of the 2018 season will be Rally Finland on July 26-29. The event is the fastest rally on the calendar, run over smooth gravel roads containing many jumps. It is also a home event for the TOYOTA GAZOO Racing World Rally Team, which is based close to the service park in Jyväskylä and celebrated victory in 2017 with Esapekka Lappi. Press release TOYOTA GAZOO Racing WRC

    Rally Italia Sardegna – Day 2 – Drama for Jari-Matti and Miikka while holding the third position overall

    June 9, 2018
    The TOYOTA GAZOO Racing World Rally Team continues to occupy a podium position going into the final day of Rally Italia Sardegna. Esapekka Lappi is in third place overnight following an extremely close battle with team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala throughout Saturday, with the two Finns never separated by more than a few seconds in their Toyota Yaris WRCs. Latvala completed the last of the day’s seven stages with a margin of 5.3 seconds over Lappi, but he was then unable to drive back to service in Alghero due to an alternator problem. The team hopes that the issue can be repaired and that Latvala can continue in the event under Rally2 rules tomorrow, where he would still be on course to score points despite incurring a time penalty. Lappi goes into the final day’s four stages just over one minute ahead of the fourth-placed driver. Ott Tänak meanwhile is ninth overall, having restarted today under Rally2 rules, after the team worked into the night to repair the damage incurred in a heavy landing on Friday’s final stage. Following a 10-minute time penalty, Tänak climbed from 19th to ninth on the leaderboard during the course of the day to move back into the points-paying positions. Quotes: Tommi Mäkinen (Team Principal) “We saw a very good fight today between Jari-Matti and Esapekka, so what happened to Jari-Matti after the last stage was obviously disappointing. We are still investigating exactly what happened, but we know that he had low battery voltage when he got to the end of the stage. Esapekka has been doing a good job and it would be very good for him if he can finish on the podium tomorrow. Hopefully Jari-Matti can restart tomorrow, and it seems that both he and Ott should at least be able to score some points.” Jari-Matti Latvala (Driver car 7) “Overall I would say that it was a good day, even though it ended this way. Looking just at the special stages, I’m really pleased with how they went. I took care when there were rough sections and I pushed harder when the conditions were better. Esapekka was doing really good times and getting closer and closer and I wanted to really attack on the last stage. I got to the end of the stage, but we had an alternator warning and eventually we ran out of battery on the road section. It’s very frustrating because I really wanted to get a podium from this event. Tomorrow we will carry on fighting and try to score as many points as possible.” End of day three (Saturday): 1 Sebastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (Ford Fiesta WRC) 3h02m16.9s 2 Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +3.9s 3 Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm (Toyota Yaris WRC) +54.2s 4 Hayden Paddon/Seb Marshall (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +2m01.8s 5 Mads Ostberg/Torstein Eriksen (Citroen C3 WRC) +2m03.9s 6 Craig Breen/Scott Martin (Citroen C3 WRC) +3m13.6s 7 Jan Kopecky/Pavel Dresler (Skoda Fabia R5) +10m41.4s 8 Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (Toyota Yaris WRC) +10m48.3s 9 Ott

    Rally Italia Sardegna – Day 1 – Latvala and Lappi fighting for the podium in Sardinia

    June 8, 2018
    TOYOTA GAZOO Racing World Rally Team drivers Jari-Matti Latvala and Esapekka Lappi completed the first full day of competition on Rally Italia Sardegna occupying third and fourth positions respectively. Ott Tänak was lying third overall when he was forced to stop on the final stage after a heavy landing damaged the cooling system. The day’s eight stages took place in unusually changeable weather, with rain showers mixed with in the sunny conditions that are more familiar in Sardinia. On the third stage of the day, Tergu – Osilo 1, Tänak claimed a stage win, maintaining his record of posting a fastest time on every rally he has contested in the Toyota Yaris WRC since he joined the team at the start of 2018. After his day came to an early end on Monte Baranta 2, the team will investigate the damage and determine whether he can restart under Rally2 rules tomorrow. Latvala enjoyed an incident-free day and won the final test of the day as he moved up into third place, 4.4 seconds ahead of Lappi. After a puncture had caused him to be cautious during the morning loop, Lappi leapt up the leaderboard when he was second quickest in a very wet second run through the Tula test, and repeated that result on the final stage of the day. Quotes: Tommi Mäkinen (Team Principal) “We don’t know exactly what happened to Ott. The team are investigating to see whether it will be possible for him to restart tomorrow. It is a very unfortunate situation because I know that Ott really wanted a good result here for his championship bid. It has been a very tricky day. We had a very good test here in Sardinia before Rally Argentina, but then it was completely dry. Today the conditions were completely different with a lot of mud and very little grip, and the setup we had this morning was not the best without the information for what would work in these conditions. Later this afternoon it was drier and both Jari-Matti and Esapekka improved their performances. They are right together on the leaderboard and it could be a good battle between them tomorrow.” Jari-Matti Latvala (Driver car 7) “Today has been very positive. I was too cautious on the second stage this morning but then I started to find the rhythm and the speed. In the second run through Tula the conditions were more like Wales with the rain and the mud, and it was so slippery. I lost a lot of time at the end of that stage, but after that the conditions got better, I felt like I could push more and then in the final stage of the day I had the confidence to attack and we won the stage. It’s very close with Esapekka going into tomorrow. I like tomorrow’s stages and the most important thing will be to have a clean run. Then, if we can keep the speed up as well, we will be in

    Rally Italia Sardegna – SS1 – Sardinian adventure underway for TOYOTA GAZOO Racing

    June 7, 2018
    The three Toyota Yaris WRC drivers got Rally Italia Sardegna underway this evening with a short super special stage at Ittiri. Esapekka Lappi was sixth quickest overall, Jari-Matti Latvala was eighth and Ott Tänak 10th, with all three within 2.5 seconds of the rally lead going into the first full day tomorrow. This morning, the team completed a positive shakedown over a 3.34-kilometre route close to the rally base in Alghero. Latvala set the fastest time of all on the shakedown, with Tänak and Lappi joint third quickest, both within a second of their team-mate. Quotes: Tom Fowler (Chief Engineer) “Shakedown went positively this morning. All three drivers set some competitive times and most importantly they were happy with the setups on the cars. It was important for them to come out of the shakedown feeling confident and I think they’re all now looking forward to the rally starting properly tomorrow morning. It was raining during shakedown and it looks as if we may get some damp conditions in the morning, before some more traditional Sardinia sun over the weekend. We were able to test a slightly softer wet gravel setup on the cars in shakedown, but the drivers also used their dry setups to make sure that everything was working. We will decide how we will set the cars up tomorrow morning depending on the latest weather information we have.” Jari-Matti Latvala (Driver car 7) “The first stage tonight passed OK without any major problems: there were just a couple of corners that were slightly more difficult than I had expected. I have been here in Sardinia many times and I always enjoy the rally. During shakedown this morning it was raining, and I don’t think I’ve seen rain here for 10 years! Normally on this rally there is a large cleaning effect the further you are down the road order, but I won’t have that advantage if there is heavy rain and the roads are wet tomorrow morning. The car is very fast and my feeling is good, so everything is ready for the start. I really want a clean event, and I’m sure if we can do that then a good result will come.” End of day one (Thursday): 1 Sebastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (Ford Fiesta WRC) +2m02.7s 2 Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jaeger (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +0.1s 3 Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +0.7s 4 Elfyn Evans/Daniel Barritt (Ford Fiesta WRC) +0.9s 5 Hayden Paddon/Seb Marshall (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +1.6s 6 Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm (Toyota Yaris WRC) +1.7s 7 Teemu Suninen/Mikko Markkula (Ford Fiesta WRC) +1.8s 8 Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (Toyota Yaris WRC) +1.9s 9 Mads Ostberg/Torstein Eriksen (Citroen C3 WRC) +1.9s 10 Ott Tänak/Martin Järveoja (Toyota Yaris WRC) +2.5s What’s next? The first full day of the rally consists of eight stages, with two loops of four stages to the north east of Alghero. The first stage of the day, Tula, is also the longest at nearly 22 kilometres, with the first pass starting
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    Jumping in the dust!

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    200th #WRC start for Miikka!

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    Pushing the limits for better

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