Jari-Matti Latvala is in good form with his old warhorse – “Can’t keep up with this car”

Driving a Skoda, Teemu Asunmaa started the Pohjanmaa Rally in Finland as expected, strongly.
Jari-Matti Latvala
Jari-Matti Latvala. Photo: Ilkka Lamminsivu
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Asunmaa, driving on his home turf in Alavus, leads the Pohjanmaa Rally by 3.9 seconds ahead of Finnish series leader Roope Korhonen. Asunmaa praised Korhonen’s performance as the first car on the route.

“Roope drove well, as there was mud and loose gravel on the road. He surely suffered from those in some places. I had to really turn the wheel to make the car go. It was a challenging stage, but that’s how they should be,” Asunmaa said in Moottoriurheilu.tv’s YouTube broadcast.

“The start was fine, but towards the end, there was mud and water puddles. I didn’t have full confidence,” Korhonen, in turn, reported.

In third place is Benjamin Korhola, driving a Hyundai, who is just six seconds behind the leader.

“It was a challenging stage. At first, there was really good grip, but then it wouldn’t stop at all. There were some unnecessary slides because of that. Hopefully, we didn’t lose too much time,” Korhola said.

Niclas Grönholm is in fourth place, 16.4 seconds off the lead. Anssi Rytkönen is fifth, ahead of Swedish guest Jari Liiten.

Jari-Matti Latvala, now the team principal of Toyota’s WRC team, started well in the historic class with his Toyota Celica. Latvala is seventh overall in the rally, trailing the leader by 29.3 seconds after three stages.

Friday evening’s final stage was particularly tough for the old Toyota.

“There were too many junctions. I can’t keep up with the boys with this car. It was very slippery, and there was a huge contrast compared to the previous stage,” Latvala noted.

The round five of the Finnish Rally Championship continues on Saturday with six more special stages.

Pohjanmaa Rally, standings after SS3/9:

1.Teemu AsunmaaSkoda14:09.5
2.Roope Korhonen Toyota+3.9
3.Benjamin KorholaHyundai+6.0
4.Niclas Grönholm Skoda+16.4
5.Anssi RytkönenSkoda+16.6
6.Jari LiitenSkoda+21.8
7.Jari-Matti LatvalaToyota+29,3
8.Tommi JylhäSkoda+34.3
9.Henri HokkalaFord+37.3
10. Jooa IivariSkoda+40.3

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