Thursday, September 21, 2023

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    Rally Estonia: Dominant Rovanperä lands hat-trick of wins in Estonia

    Kalle Rovanpera and Jonne Halttunen proved unmatched as they yet again pulled off a thrilling performance to register their third consecutive victory at rally Estonia on Sunday.

    Rovanperä grabbed the rally lead from rival Thierry Neuville on Friday afternoon and went on to dominate, sweeping one stage after another to make 15stage wins of the 12 stages of rally Estonia.

    The 22-year-old sealed the victory with 52.7seconds as he recollected the memories of when he became the first young driver to ever win a wrc event in the same event in 2021. 

    “An important event, this one. For the championship it’s a really important place to get good points and the plan was this exactly,” said Rovanpera. 

    “It’s my favourite event of the calendar so I knew we had to push here, and it went well,” he added. 

    Rovanpera is now 55points clear at the top of the WRC standings leaderboard.

    Hyundai’s Thierry Neuville settled for second with a hybrid issue denying him a chance to fight for the full power stage points. He would only pick one bonus point. 

    Esapekka Lappi continued to defend his podium position pushing Toyota’s Elfyn Evans to fourth with a difference of 7.3seconds to secure a double podium for the Hyundai team. 

    Teemu Suninen completed the top five on his debut in the Hyundai i20N rally1 car. 

    M-sport’s Pierre-Louis Loubet grabbed the sixth position from Toyota’s Katsuta Takamoto at the Wolf power stage.

    Home hero Ott Tanak could not do much to wake up from a five minute penalty over an engine change on Thursday. He would settle for eighth overall.

    Andreas Mikkelsen maintained his lead to win the WRC2 category as well as finishing ninth overall. He was followed by Sami Pajari. 

    The WRC calendar heads to another fast gravel event; Secto Rally Finland scheduled for 3-6 August. 

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