Co-driver: Miikka Anttila

We managed to get the set up of the car to be very good in the Shakedown and it felt really nice to head for the race. The rally itself started perfectly because I was able to drive the fastest time on stage one. The next two stages went really well, too, and we were leading Gronholm with 1,5 seconds when we came to the service. My self-confidence was good, I was focused and the car felt good which all made the driving easy. On the other hand I must admit that being the eighth car on the road was an advantage for me on Friday. After the service we drove the same stages again and I knew that I had to drive fast if I wanted to succeed because the roads were clean now, no longer slippery for anyone. Stage four went still pretty well: we were third fastest but Gronholm took the lead by six seconds. Stage five was very bad for me. After 3,5 kilometres there was a tightening left corner with a stone inside where I cut a bit too much in and our front left tyre hit the stone damaging the front left suspension turning the tyre under the car. We had to retire the rally which had started so perfectly. On Saturday we were able to start again due to the Super Rally rule but we were ten minutes behind the leading car. We drove as the second car on the road in the morning and as the first car in the afternoon. Now I realised how difficult indeed it is to be the “plough” car. My times weren’t so splendid in the morning but in the afternoon I managed to drive a few good times. On Sunday all the six stages were not only very good but also meaningful to drive. My intention was to drive good stage times and bring the car to the finish so that I would feel good about going to Greece. We drove 2nd – 6th fastest times on Sunday and finished ninth getting two manufacture’s points. All in all the rally left a good feeling because my pace was better than ever before.


Car: Ford Focus WRC -06
Service Team: Stobart