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Saturday, May 25, 2024

Rovanpera maintains lead, Neuville loses podium

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The Toyota driver will head into the occasion’s last stage with a 47.8s lead over Hyundai’s Dani Sordo.

Hyundai’s Esapekka Lappi inherited third, 1m17.8s again, from team-mate Neuville, who dropped to fifth and is now 6m35.0s off after nursing a severely underpowered i20 N by way of the morning loop. M-Sport’s Ott Tanak climbed to a lonely fourth, 2m03.4s off the oveall lead, advantage of Neuville’s dramas. 

The morning began in a disastrous style for Neuville courtesy of a suspected turbo difficulty that considerably lowered the ability of his i20 N.

Smoke was seen coming from Neuville’s automobile at Saturday evening’s media zone though it’s unclear if the 2 circumstances are related.

Nevertheless, the issue successfully ended his podium hopes and the potential for Hyundai to deploy workforce orders to raise Neuville forward of team-mate Sordo into second total.

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Because of this, Neuville misplaced 1m26.4s on stage 16, Paredes 11.05km, demoting him from third to fifth total.

“It is over. It is one thing just like yesterday night… we now have to search out out,” stated a pissed off Neuville.

Toyota’s Takamoto Katsuta, who retired on Friday, received the stage to assert his first quickest time of the occasion, beating rally chief and team-mate Rovanpera by 1.8s, with the Finn electing for a measured method to guard his lead.

“It appears that evidently we had been nonetheless too quick,” stated Rovanpera. “I do not understand how gradual we should always drive as a result of it feels so gradual. We had been simply saving the tyres.”

Kalle Rovanpera, Jonne Halttunen, Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota GR Yaris Rally1

Photograph by: McKlein / Motorsport Images

Sordo got here by way of the check with the third quickest time, 7.7s quicker than Lappi, who inherited third total because of Neuville’s issues, whereas electing to save lots of his tyres within the stage. 

Though, Tanak climbed to fourth total, the Estonian’s Puma was with out hybrid energy.

“The hybrid did not just like the quick evening – it looks as if this automobile just isn’t waking up at the moment,” stated Tanak.

Rovanpera additional prolonged his rally lead by successful stage 17, the primary run by way of the enduring Fafe check which is able to host the ultimate Energy Stage.

The Finn pipped Lappi by 0.2s whereas Tanak, nonetheless struggling with out hybrid, was an additional two tenths again.

Neuville tried to restore the issue along with his i20 N on the street part previous to the check however was unable to discover a repair and misplaced one other 1m32.9s however remained in fifth total. He misplaced one other 2m50.2s throughout the ultimate check of the morning.

Tanak took the honours in stage 18 (Cabeceiras de Basto 22.01km) with a 9.7s margin over Sordo, who took a bit out of Rovanpera’s lead given the latter adopted a cautious method forward of the Energy Stage.

In WRC2, Gus Greensmith led the category though an influence steering difficulty introduced Oliver Solberg again into play after the Swede lost the lead overnight to a one-minute penalty for performing illegal doughnuts in Saturday evening’s tremendous particular.

Solberg closed a 24.6s hole to eight.7s forward of the ultimate stage this afternoon. 

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