Winner of the Arctic Rally, Ott Tänak had to “push” Hyundai

Ott Tänak revealed that he had to push his engineers to improve his car before going to the Arctic Rally Finland, Round 2 of the WRC season, and to win it.

Arrived on the spot after his zero point at the Rallye Monte-Carlo, the Estonian signed an indisputable victory in the event based in Rovaniemi. Although he relaxed a little in the last stages, the Hyundai driver completed this short rally of only 251 km with a lead of 17.5 over the second, the Toyota driver. Kalle Rovanperä.

Team boss Andrea Adamo, who praised the way Ott Tänak dominated at the weekend, had spoken publicly about the need to win in order to forget Monte Carlo. Enough to put his pilot under pressure, and thus lead him to rely more on his mechanics.

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“This victory is very important and it allows us to score big points for the championship”, said Ott Tänak, who climbs directly to fifth place in the driver classification when he left the Monte-Carlo empty-handed.

“We were in Finland, the home country of one of our biggest rivals, so there was pressure. We knew it would be hard to fight, but in the end we had a very good week. -end. The pre-rally tests were under very different conditions so we didn’t really know what to expect. I pushed the engineers a lot, but the hard work they did really paid off. We tried new things during the shakedown, and it worked fine. “

“New rallies like this are always more open. When we got here we really didn’t know what to expect and we didn’t know what was going to happen, who was going to be the fastest, if the settings were going to work and how to handle the tires “, he added.

“If you go to such a new event you never really know. You have to learn while driving and react to certain things. And it’s probably at the start of the rally that you can tell the most, otherwise during the rally the other drivers start to learn and the gap gets smaller and smaller. For my part, I knew from the start that I had to build up a lead and then I was able to manage [cet écart].”

Still in search of the form that allowed him to be titled with Toyota two years ago, Ott Tänak is certain that this second victory in the colors of Hyundai can serve as a springboard for his 2021 season. “We would like to win all the rallies, but things have not been so smooth and overall not so simple”, underlined the Estonian pilot. “But this year we have a longer season ahead of us, so we can have a much more consistent feel.”

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