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News and Quotes SS2

A historic first day for the tri-national Central European Rally ended after a 220 km drive from the Ceremonial Start in Prague, the capital of the Czech Republic, to Passau in Germany. The second special stage on the Klatovy circuit was 8.92 km long and once again provided a spectacular opportunity for the numerous spectators who gathered on site to watch the action. The winner of the opening stage, Ott Tänak, had opted for soft dry tyres for his Ford Puma Rally1 Hybrid for the first day. That paid off on the bone-dry Prague stage. But some sections of the Klatovy stage were damp, which may have played into the hands of the competitors who had opted for rain tyres. Of the two WRC contenders, Toyota Gazoo Racing teammates Kalle Rovanperä and Elfyn Evans, it was the Finn who opened up a further 4.8 second lead after a small mistake by the Welshman on the stage. At the end of the day, Hyundai driver Thierry Neuville - also on soft dry tyres - took the stage win and the overall lead.


#69 Kalle Rovanperä (FIN) / Jonne Halttonen (FIN), Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 Hybrid

"It was not so wet anymore, we expected a bit of rain here. It’s not raining anymore so let’s hope it’s not drying up for the others much more. At least this one was cleaning up a lot but it’s okay.”


#33 Elfyn Evans (GBR) / Scott Martin (GBR), Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 Hybrid

"I had an overshoot on one of the junctions, just locked up on the braking so it’s a shame for that.”


#11 Thierry Neuville (BEL) / Martijn Wydaeghe (BEL), Hyundai i20 N Rally1 Hybrid

"It was not the greatest stage, I don’t know about the tyres – it was in between the wet and the soft, I decided to go for the soft at the very last moment but it was an okay stage. The visibility is really difficult, the anti-cut (poles) are reflecting the lights so you can’t see very well. We didn’t have a big push but tomorrow is another day.”


#8 Ott Tänak (EST) / Martin Järveoja (EST), Ford Puma Rally1 Hybrid

"It was a bit challenging, there was not too much (standing) water but it was just wet enough to not get the temperature in (the tyres) so it was very sketchy in places but we made it through. Perhaps not the fastest this time.”


#17 Sébastien Ogier (FRA) / Vincent Landais (FRA), Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 Hybrid

"I didn’t have any feeling on this stage to be honest, it was a difficult one for me. But okay, restart is tomorrow.”


#3 Teemu Suninen (FIN) / Mikko Markkula (FIN), Hyundai i20 N Rally1 Hybrid

“I must say it was really tricky. First time on the wet with this car, so wasn’t the best start, but I think it was a steady start and I know where to take a lot of time. We have to keep going.”

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