Thrilling finish to the WRC event! Ott Tänak clinches victory, Ogier frustrated – “It’s not rally”

Hyundai's Ott Tänak claimed the overall victory in Rally Sardinia on the final special stage.
Ott Tänak
Ott Tänak. Photo by: Vincent Thuillier/Hyundai Motorsport GmbH
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The Estonian secured the top spot with a narrow margin of 0.2 seconds over Toyota’s Sebastien Ogier. The French champion had dominated the event but suffered a puncture on the last stage.

Tänak was the top points scorer in Sardinia over the weekend. In addition to his first place, he earned six points for second place on Super Sunday and four points for second place on the Power Stage. In total, Tänak collected 25 points over the weekend. Ogier earned 22 points.

“Tough weekend, this stage there was no road and some huge stones. I want to congratulate my daughter Miia, she got her first podium today so we will celebrate our podiums tomorrow,” Tänak joked, referring to his child’s activities.

“Puncture. Not much I can do. It’s not rally, it’s like cross country. Not much I can do. That’s life, I think we deserved more than that but at least Ott has done a good rally as well,” Ogier lamented.

Hyundai’s Thierry Neuville, who retired on Saturday, made up a lot over the weekend on Sunday. Neuville was the fastest on Super Sunday and also took maximum points from the Power Stage. In total, Neuville earned 12 points.

Neuville continues to lead the WRC standings with 122 points. Tänak and Toyota’s Elfyn Evans are 18 points behind the Belgian.

“We’re gonna see how many points we get, still a lot of cleaning. Not proud of what happened yesterday. We were controlling the speed and we felt good in the car, but I lost concentration for a tenth of a second. It wasn’t a big mistake but it was enough for the car to get stuck, I’m sorry for the team,” Neuville said.

Hyundai’s Dani Sordo finished in third place. The experienced Spaniard once again showed why he is in his element in slow gravel rallies. Evans, who had a subdued rally, finished in fourth place, 12 seconds off the podium.

M-Sport Ford’s Gregoire Munster completed the event in fifth place, but was nearly seven minutes behind the leader. Competing in Toyota’s new Rally2 car, Sami Pajari finished an impressive sixth overall and dominated the WRC2 class.

“It was really nice, I was hoping for a good result after the disappointment in Portugal. We knew the pace was there we just needed to put it together. The team was doing a good job and the car is really, really fast so we just needed a good driver to finish it,” Pajari enthused.

The WRC continues at the end of June in Poland.

Rally Sardinia final results:

1.Ott TänakHyundai3:06:05.6
2.Sebastien OgierToyota+0.2
3.Dani SordoHyundai+2:25.8
4.Elfyn EvansToyota+2:37.8
5. Gregoire MunsterFord+6:42.9
6.Sami PajariToyota+7:13.4
7.Yohan RosselCitroen+7:33.9
8.Jan SolansToyota+7:52.7
9.Martin ProkopSkoda+10:05.4
10.Kajetan KajetanowiczSkoda+10:09.3

Super Sunday standings:

1.Thierry NeuvilleHyundai26:02.7
2.Ott TänakHyundai+2.6
3.Elfyn EvansToyota+14.2
4.Sebastien OgierToyota+19.9
5.Dani SordoHyundai+32.7
6.Takamoto KatsutaToyota+34.2
7.Adrien FourmauxFord+56.8

Itinerary for Rally Sardinia (CET):

Friday 31.5.

08.01 Shakedown: Ittiri (2,08 km)
14.33 SS1: Osilo - Tergu 1 (25,65 km)
15.33 SS2: Sedini - Castelsardo 1 (13,26 km)
17.33 SS3: Osilo - Tergu 2 (25,65 km)
18.35 SS4: Sedini - Castelsardo 2 (13,26 km)

Saturday 1.6.

07.41 SS5: Tempio Pausania 1 (12,03 km)
08.49 SS6: Tula 1 (22,61 km)
10.41 SS7: Tempio Pausania 2 (12,03 km)
11.49 SS8: Tula 2 (22,61 km)
14.05 SS9: Monte Lerno - Monti di Ala 1 (25,33 km)
15.05 SS10: Coiluna - Loelle 1 (14,53 km)
17.05 SS11: Monte Lerno - Monti di Ala 2 (25,33 km)
18.05 SS12: Coiluna - Loelle 2 (14,53 km)

Sunday 2.6.

08.00 SS13: Cala Flumini 1 (12,55 km)
09.05 SS14: Sassari - Argentiera 1 (7,10 km)
11.00 SS15: Cala Flumini 2 (12,55 km)
12.15 SS16: Sassari - Argentiera 2 (7,10 km) *Power Stage

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