The Toyota driver produced a faultless show to fend off a robust problem from the Hyundai pair of Ott Tanak and Craig Breen to win the occasion, reigniting his championship hopes within the course of.
Evans’ triumph at Rally Finland’s seventieth anniversary occasion ensured he’s solely the second Briton to win certainly one of rallying’s most prestigious occasions, following within the footsteps of Kris Meeke in 2016.
The Welshman racked up 10 wins from the 19 levels, together with the Energy Stage, and was in a position to push on Finland’s high-speed gravel roads to absolutely the restrict to see off two-time winner Tanak to the tune of 14.1s.
Reflecting on his fifth profession WRC win, Evans felt it was his finest ever efficiency within the championship.
“It’s most likely fairly excessive,” mentioned Evans, when requested the place the victory ranks in his profession so far. “I feel it’s all the time tough to beat the primary win at house in Wales, however by way of efficiency this most likely ranks the best to be honest.
“I maybe wasn’t that assured coming into it to be trustworthy however we discovered good feeling with the automobile fairly early on, and we improved that once more for Saturday, and we took it from there actually.
“4 stage wins on Saturday morning actually went in direction of the win however from there on it was about making an attempt to fend Ott and Craig off as they had been charging fairly arduous. I’m comfortable we managed to do it.”
Elfyn Evans, Scott Martin, Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota Yaris WRC
Picture by: Toyota Racing
The victory coupled by a subdued efficiency for championship chief and Toyota team-mate Sebastien Ogier, who completed fifth, has moved Evans to inside 24 factors of the Frenchman with two occasions remaining.
Whereas acknowledging Ogier’s benefit has been slashed, Evans stays coy on his title probabilities however admits they’re now extra life like.
“It [the title race] has positively moved in the best path however it’s nonetheless an extended, good distance away,” he added.
“We knew it was a really distant probability after Greece and nonetheless it’s not significantly better of an opportunity now nonetheless however it’s shifting in the best path.
“On the finish of the day we have now to go to the following two occasions left on the calendar and provides it our greatest shot and get the very best outcomes we will. That’s all we will do.
“It’s maybe barely extra life like as it should solely take Seb to have a retirement and it might be all open. I can’t want that and all we will fear about is our efficiency on the following two rallies.”
The WRC heads to Spain for the penultimate spherical of the championship from 14-17 October.