Latvala fears rock strikes

Jari-Matti Latvala says he is worried about driving flat out following suspension failure on his Toyota Yaris at the last two WRC rounds in Argentina and Portugal.

Broken front right suspension sidelined the Finn early in the opening leg at both dirt road rounds after impacts with a rock and Latvala has called on his Toyota Gazoo Racing squad to strengthen the Yaris.

“We have the problem two times now with the suspension and this is something where we have to look into it because I feel we could improve,” he told wrc.com

“You can be a little bit afraid to push, to do the maximum push, because two times has happened now for me the suspension failure.

“I have been going over the rock for sure and my driving style is a bit harder, but I think we have still room to improve. The performance of the car has improved so now we need to make better strength.”

Latvala has failed to score on any of the last three rounds, a crash in Corsica preceding his suspension problems. He admitted he is changing his way of driving to compensate for the issues.

“In Portugal there were quite many places where you go over the rocks, they’re on the line. In Argentina there were rocks, even in shakedown there was a big rock which everyone was going over,” he explained.

“Then comes the difficulty you don’t know any more which rocks you can go over and which ones will break the suspension. That’s why I started to focus on a bit more different way of driving. In the more technical parts I can go over the rocks but in the faster parts I will go around the rocks.”

Latvala is not hopeful of solutions before next week’s Rally Italia Sardegna (7 - 10 June) but pointed to the fact the Italian encounter is slower than the previous two fixtures.

“Maybe Sardinia is a bit more technical than Portugal and if the impact comes it’s the speed that makes the problem. If you’re slower and get an impact it’s not so dangerous. Sardinia is coming so quickly I don’t think we can do any big things in between, it will be more like Finland and Turkey,” he said.

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