Latvala wins Tour de Corse

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Monday 5th October, 2015 - 1:00am

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Latvala is the first Finnish winner in Corsica since 1984

Latvala is the first Finnish winner in Corsica since 1984

Jari-Matti Latvala scored back-to-back French World Rally Championship victories by winning the Tour de Corse – Rallye de France on the Mediterranean island of Corsica.

The Finn scored his maiden asphalt triumph in 2014 in the Alsace region of France and followed up with his second sealed-surface success after a particularly demanding Tour de Corse.

Latvala, driving a Volkswagen Polo R, beat Elfyn Evans’ Ford Fiesta RS by 43.1sec after three days of action on twisty and narrow mountain roads lashed by extreme weather than caused the cancellation of two of the nine scheduled stages.

Andreas Mikkelsen finished third in another Polo R, a further 3.2sec behind.

Sébastien Ogier won the final live-TV Power Stage in a Polo R to claim three bonus points and redeem some satisfaction despite finishing only 15th overall after a disastrous Friday. The Frenchman had an event to forget, in sharp contrast to the perfect weekend when he clinched his third world drivers’ championship at Coates Hire Rally Australia just three weeks ago.

Robert Kubica took two points for second in the Power Stage in a Fiesta RS and Latvala took the final point.

“I am struggling to put it all into words. It is a fantastic feeling to win here on Corsica,” Latvala said at the finish.

“The conditions were not easy again today, as we were constantly switching between dry and damp sections. And my lead over Elfyn Evans was not exactly what you would call comfortable.

“Despite this, I wanted to avoid taking too many risks, to extend my lead in a controlled and cool manner and to wrap up the win. I did exactly that.”

Latvala and co-driver Miikka Anttila showed their pace on what were probably the toughest conditions seen in recent years and at a Rally de France with an extremely diverse character.

Two of the nine special stages were cancelled due to landslides following rain, reducing the overall competitive distance to just 245.35 kilometres. Teams and drivers battled extreme weather throughout the three days of the rally.

Paddon pleased to climb to fifth on the final day

Paddon pleased to climb to fifth on the final day

Friday was dominated by a hurricane and heavy rain, while the mud-covered asphalt stages made life difficult for the drivers and co-drivers on Saturday. On Sunday, the biggest challenge facing the crews was a route that was damp in some places, dry in others, and gradually drying out over the course of the day.

A good finish to the rally saw Kiwi Hayden Paddon claim fifth place.

“It’s been very tough,” Paddon said. “Obviously some very trying conditions early on, and then it’s been slowly improving for the rest of the rally. We’ve been able to show some good progress from where we were in Germany. From this we can take a lot of positive signs.”

VIDEO: Morning Stages

VIDEO: Power Stage

FINAL POSITIONS: Tour de Corse – Rallye de France

Pos Driver Team Car Gap
1 Jari-Matti Latvala Volkswagen Motorsport Volkswagen 2h39m46.7s
2 Elfyn Evans M-Sport World Rally Team Ford 43.1s
3 Andreas Mikkelsen Volkswagen Motorsport II Volkswagen 46.3s
4 Kris Meeke Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT Citroen 1m33.4s
5 Hayden Paddon Hyundai Motorsport N Hyundai 1m53.6s
6 Mads Ostberg Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT Citroen 1m59.8s
7 Dani Sordo Hyundai Motorsport Hyundai 2m10.4s
8 Bryan Bouffier M-Sport World Rally Team Ford 2m12.8s
9 Stephane Sarrazin First Motorsport Ford 2m39.3s
10 Ott Tanak M-Sport World Rally Team Ford 3m43.0s


2015 FIA DRIVERS´ STANDINGS

Pos Driver Points
1. Sébastien Ogier 238
2. Jari-Matti Latvala 160
3. Andreas Mikkelsen 126
4. Mads Østberg 98
5. Thierry Neuville 86
6. Kris Meeke 83
7. Elfyn Evans 81
8. Hayden Paddon 66
9. Ott Tanak 63
10. Dani Sordo 62
11. Martin Prokop 33
12. Khalid Al Qassimi 9
13. Juho Hanninen 8
14. Yuriy Protasov 8
15. Robert Kubica 8
16. Nasser Al-Attiyah 7
17. Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari 6
18. Sébastien Loeb 6
19. Esapekka Lappi 4
20. Diego Dominguez 4
21. Paolo Andreucci 4
22. Bryan Bouffier 4
23. Pontus Tidemand 2
24. Jan Kopecky 2
25. Nicolas Fuchs 2
26. Gustavo Saba 2
27. Jari Ketomaa 1
28. Stephane Lefebvre 1
29. Lorenzo Bertelli 1

 

2015 FIA TEAMS´ STANDINGS

Pos Teams Total
1. Volkswagen Motorsport 369
2. Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT 184
3. Hyundai Motorsport 183
4. M-Sport World Rally Team 170
5. Volkswagen Motorsport II 91
6. Hyundai Mobis World Rally Team 59
7. Jipocar Czech National Team 45
8. F.W.R.T. 9

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