Rally Finland: Toyota driver wins fastest gravel rally

Surprise in Finland Rally. Elvin Evans, a 32-year-old Toyota factory driver from the small town of Dolgellau in Wales, won the fastest gravel rally of the year. With his second win of the season, he closed the gap to the championship captain and teammate Sebastien Ogier to only 24 points.

Outside Evans kept top-rated Hyundai drivers Ott Tanak of Estonia and Craig Brin of Ireland in check. “I can’t believe it. I didn’t think winning in Finland was possible,” said Evans, amazed by his performance.

He’s now one of the illustrious circle of just 13 foreigners, and the Finns have taken their bread from them in 70 home games so far.

Elfyn Evans, a 32-year-old Toyota factory driver from Dolgellau, Wales

Evans took the lead on the morning of the second of three stages with a string of personal best results. “I give 100 percent. But somehow Elfyn is always a little faster,” Brin wondered. The Hyundai interim driver, a specialist in gravel-specific stages with average speeds in some cases over 120 km/h, had until then taken the lead ahead of his teammate Ott Tanak. On Saturday evening, the Estonian was only within walking distance of Chief Evans. The 2019 world champion was short by 9.1 seconds at this point.

But the Toyota driver did not allow himself to be disrupted. He even dared to attack the last ‘Strength Stage’, which was very risky given his powerful advance. With another best time, he got the five bonus points associated with it.

On the other hand, championship leader Sebastien Ogier, winner of the 2013 Rally Finland, did not really start this time. He even had to put himself behind Finn Esapekka Lappi, who for the first time in about a year returned to the steering wheel of a World Rally Car (1.6-liter turbo petrol engine, circa 380 noteAnd Allard) cranked.

“To be honest, I have no idea why that is,” Ogier baffled. The defending champion has not won a single special stage. In addition, the 37-year-old received a penalty for not wearing his helmet properly. However, a rank five in the end result was not in danger. His lead over British Ford driver Gus Greensmith was pretty big. With a tally of ten World Cup points, Ogier was able to limit damage.

This means that only Toyota working drivers, Sebastien Ogier and Elvin Evans, are finally considered world rally champions in 2021. About the Belgian Thierry Neuville, who is third in the standings, who was his last hope Hyundai Rest, it’s over during Phase Two. In fifth and thus ahead of Ogier, he had to drive his i20 WRC It shut down due to damage to the coolant in the engine.
With two races still left, Neuville’s 60-point deficit cannot be compensated for. Champion Hyundai should be in the World Brand Championship too Toyota Give way.
The next round of the World Championship is the Asphalt Rally of Spain (October 14-17) in the southern Catalonia region Barcelona.

Finland Rally result

1 – Elvin Evans / Scott Martin (Toyota Yaris WRC), 2:19: 13.7 hours
2 – Ott Tanak / Martin Yarfuja (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC), +14.1 seconds
3. Craig Breen / Paul Nagel (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC), +42.2 seconds
4. Esapekka Lappi / Janne Ferm (Toyota Yaris WRC), +58.8 seconds
5. Sébastien Ogier / Julien Ingrassia (Toyota Yaris WRC) +2: 54.4 Minuten
6 – Joss Greensmith / Chris Patterson (Ford Fiesta WRC) +5: 02.3 minutesn

The World Championship stands after 10 of 12 Rallyes

1. Sébastien Ogier (Toyota Yaris WRC), 190 Punkte
2. Elfyn Evans (Toyota Yaris WRC), 166 Punkte
3. Thierry Nouvel (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC), 130 Punkt
4. Callie Rovanpera (Toyota Yaris WRC), 129 Punkte
5. Ott Tänak (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) 128 points
6. Craig Brin (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC), 76 Punkte

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