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News and Quotes SS9

A new day dawned on the WRC Central European Rally and carried the field out of the service park in Passau, Germany in a new direction. After two days in Czechia they turned for Austria to start the third day of this tri-nation asphalt event and the order of the top 10 crews was reversed. This meant that the advantage of clean roads that had been enjoyed by championship leader Kalle Rovanperä was erased. The opening 15.72 km Schärdinger Innviertel test remained damp and slippery after overnight rain. Adding to the intrigue, further rainfall arrived just as the top three cars entered the stage. Sébastien Ogier gained fifth position over team-mate Takamoto Katsuta with a fine run, hoping to leave the battle for sixth far behind him as the crews played themselves in to the start of a long day’s action. With Ott Tänak continuing his lonely run in fourth place, the top three crews held station, second-placed Neuville dropping just over a second to title challenger Elfyn Evans.

#13 Gregoire Munster (LUX) / Louis Louka (BEL), Ford Puma Rally1 Hybrid

“I just was a tiny bit too late on the brake and I had to go straight on and pull the handbrake a bit in the grass. So we lost a bit of time. It’s a bit tricky… you have the feeling it’s always more consistent like normal but one time then there is mud so it’s a bit like on-off.”

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

“Was bad driving: I missed one 90-degree junction. It was just one slippy corner and after that I’m really not confident to push. The conditions are way better but still it’s not easy.”

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

“It’s still not a great stage for me I believe but it’s okay. It’s still getting quickly dirty after a few cars. We try to get a decent result.”

#18 Takamoto Katsuta (JPN) / Aaron Johnston (IRL), Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 Hybrid

“Most of the section had big surprises in store, as the gravel gets more and more, and so there are a lot of surprises in the pace notes. Not nice.”

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

“It’s a bit less wet, but still very tricky in places. Quite many grip changes so not much easier.”

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

“Like always in these conditions there’s always bits you can do better but it was okay.”

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

"It was a bit of rain but not too much... Just still struggling a bit with the handling in general. I would say towards the end a lot of longer corners where I do not have the front grip to commit… we’re going to do some small changes now and see if we can improve.”

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

“I think it was quite good start, we just started with quite careful pace, nothing too much and for sure the guys are pushing so if we can be close to that pace it’s okay. Let’s try to just make the day through with good feeling and keep the gaps well.”


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