The 2019 world champion ended a private victory drought of 462 days after rising from 4 gruelling days competing in scorching temperatures on Sardinia’s tough gravel roads.
Tanak’s run to a dominant victory not solely marked his first go to to the highest step of the rostrum since Arctic Rally Finland in February 2021, however was additionally Hyundai’s first of the brand new Rally1 hybrid period.
Hyundai has endured a troubled begin this season hampered by late name to decide to Rally1 rules that has left it enjoying atone for automotive improvement in comparison with its Toyota and M-Sport-Ford rivals.
Consequently, reliability points have plagued the group this season however it has proven glimpses of tempo to document podiums in Sweden, Croatia and Portugal after a woeful Monte Carlo season opener.
It has additionally confronted inside upheaval following the departure of charismatic group principal Andrea Adamo in December final yr, that has left deputy group director Julien Moncet in cost on an interim foundation.
Tanak confronted his personal reliability scare on Friday when a transmission problem struck his i20 N, however fortunately an incident cancelled the day’s closing two levels providing him a reprieve. His team-mate Thierry Neuville was not so lucky as a transmission problem value him two minutes.
Nevertheless, the Estonian feels his victory and a 3rd place for team-mate Dani Sordo will raise morale within the camp and assist push the group to enhance the i20 N.
“I believe it [the win] is extra a morale [boost] than championship, to be sincere,” stated Tanak.
Podium: Ott Tänak, Martin Järveoja, Hyundai World Rally Staff Hyundai i20 N Rally1
Photograph by: Austral / Hyundai Motorsport
“We wish to combat for the championship, however for that we have to have the automotive. We have now lots of issues nonetheless to do.
“We’re nowhere near perfection for the place we wish to be. Nonetheless, the manufacturing facility is working lengthy hours however we wanted that little strain off.
“The job they’re doing is for profitable rallies. I’m fairly certain it’s an additional increase for them, after which we begin recent Monday morning.
“It is fairly a giant change over in comparison with two weeks in the past. It was fairly a giant battle there [Portugal] and a bit irritating However, we gave it a giant push.
“Fortunately, we had a take a look at day between Portugal and Sardinia and we might proceed working and we undoubtedly did some good enhancements. Earlier than the rally, I used to be rather more assured within the automotive. Clearly, it has labored out fairly nicely.”
Tanak’s victory has elevated the Estonian to 3rd within the championship standings, 58 factors behind chief Kalle Rovanpera.