FIA

Neste Oil Rally Finland

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00:00:00 (UTC +3)

20°C68°F
Jyväskylä

Abandons

# Pilote/Voiture Eligibilité Groupe Classe Contrôle Motif
90 FINJ. KUIKKA
Honda Civic Type R
RC4 SF1 Mechanical
111 RUSL. URLICHICH
Ford Fiesta R2
RC4 TC1 Medical

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Thu 22:12 - Until then
Keep up to date with all the news from day one in Finland on wrc.com. And if you want to watch the latest action from the stages, don't forget to check out the new WRC+ service.

Thu 22:09 - Coming up on Friday
The longest day of the rally with 134.47 timed kilometres over nine special stages. It begins with the Pihlajakoski test, last sampled by WRC competitors in 1987, from 0918hrs local time.

Thu 22:09 - WRC2 top 5 after SS4
1. Ketomaa (Fiesta R5): 31:31.6, 2. Kruuda (208 T16): +35.0s, 3. Brynildsen (Fiesta RRC): +36.2s, 4. Chardonnet (DS3 R5): +51.6s, 5. Kikireshko (Fiesta R5): +2m55.6s

Thu 22:02 - End of day 1: Meeke
"I think everybody has been pushing today but when you’re taking manageable risks it’s so enjoyable on these roads. If you’re safe here you lose loads of time. I have taken no massive risks, and it’s working for sure. This evening I was close to my comfortable limit. Maybe there’s a little more to give but I’m very happy to be so close to the guys ahead. We’ve done only one of four days. We have 22 stages still to come!"

Thu 22:01 - End of day 1: Ogier
“It was good news to see the rain falling because the stages were very dry on the recce and I was worried to open the road in these conditions. With the rain it was better. Maybe I was still a little 'on holiday' in the morning, but I was better in the afternoon. Tomorrow we will have to push harder. There is still some more pace to come, but only with more risk. It’s good to have such a close battle with Jari-Matti, and now Kris is joining. That makes it interesting and hopefully we can carry this fight for a long time. Tomorrow morning I will attack immediately and try to put Jari-Matti under pressure.”

Thu 22:00 - End of day 1: Latvala
“I’m feeling excellent. I have a really good set-up and lots of confidence in the car. It felt perfect at shakedown, so overall a good day. Kris Meeke is pushing us hard, so I expect it will be a great fight this weekend.”

Thu 21:28 - SS4: No choice for Ketomaa
The WRC2 leader defends his earlier win or bust approach on SS3. "It's unfortunate that Ott [Tanak] had problems there because we had two DMACK cars in front. I was pushing at 120 per cent on Lankamaa and was very lucky to get through. But it had to be done because if I had let him get away we would never get the time back tomorrow."

Thu 21:22 - WRC top 5 after SS4
1. Latvala (VW): 29:17.9, 2. Ogier (VW): +4.5s, 3. Meeke (Citroen): +9.2s, 4. Hirvonen (Ford): +26.4s, 5. Hanninen (Hyundai): +27.1s

Thu 21:15 - SS4: Kubica on the Finnish Grand Prix
"I'm not a big fan of gravel tyres on tarmac roads and it was noticeable on the tarmac that we had an engine misfire too. Okay though, still a long way to go."

Thu 21:13 - SS4: Hanninen slips to fifth
The Finn loses position to Hirvonen on Thursday's final test. He will start Friday's leg trailing fourth by 0.7sec.

Thu 21:07 - SS4: Solberg pledges attack
"The puncture today was unlucky, but that's how it goes sometimes. Tomorrow I'll be flat out on the second loop." The Norwegian lies 1m13.8sec off the lead.

Thu 21:01 - SS4: Long night ahead for Evans
"My pace notes haven't been perfect today to be honest - they're on the cautious side. We can work on them tonight and hope for a better result tomorrow." The Welshman ends Thursday's competition 1m14.8sec off the lead.

Thu 20:59 - SS4: Another big push from Meeke
But it's not quite enough for a stage win - instead he's third fastest so far, 1.2sec off Ogier's winning time. "Scratch times don't come easy in this sport but I'm delighted to be here. I always said you need experience here, and this is the first event I did last year so it's really nice to be at this speed. Still a long way to go."

Thu 20:56 - SS4: Mixed day for Neuville
Who was one of the star performers here last year. "We struggled a little bit with pace notes on the first two stages. Now the confidence is better, but here the chicanes were destroyed by the cars ahead and there was lots of dirt on the road." The Belgian ends the day 38.8sec off the lead.

Thu 20:52 - SS4: Hirvonen critical
of his performance so far. "I could do better, so far it's a bit slow." He ends the day 26.4sec off Latvala's overnight lead.

Thu 20:50 - SS4: Ostberg through
Third fastest so far, 2.0sec slower than Ogier.

Thu 20:46 - SS4: Mikkelsen clears
his time is 2.2sec slower than Ogier's - which is best so far. "Not the best stage, and I've had better days to be honest, but it's okay. We still have a long way to go."

Thu 20:44 - SS4: Latvala loses a front wing
After clipping a bale on the final corner, but it's a minor issue and he's through 0.8sec slower than Ogier. "Not a perfect day - and there's more to give. I have to do better if I'm going to catch Sebastien" Latvala's overall lead stands at 4.5sec.

Thu 20:41 - SS4: Ogier in the groove
"One corner was a bit tighter than I thought, but it feels like I'm getting into the groove."

Thu 20:39 - SS4: Ogier completes
In a time of 1m46.1s.

Thu 20:35 - SS4: Ogier on stage
The defending world champion left the start line at 2035hrs

Thu 20:28 - SS4: LIVE on television
We're watching Jani Paasonen tackle the stage now in the zero car. A few damp patches on the tarmac roads but largely dry. Gravel section damp but looks in good condition.

Thu 20:22 - SS4 weather update
Plenty of blue sky above Jyvaskyla now. No chance of rain on Thursday's closing stage.

Thu 20:13 - SS4 details
One of the legendary Finnish stages, Harju is back after a 16 year absence. The 2.27km mixed surface test includes a gravel section through parkland and ends on tarmac roads in the heart of Jyvaskyla. Watch it LIVE on WRC

Thu 20:12 - WRC2 top 5 after SS3
1. Ketomaa (Fiesta R5): 29:38.4, 2. Kruuda (208 T16): +32.5s, 3. Brynildsen (Fiesta RRC): +35.4s, 4. Chardonnet (DS3 R5): +50.8s, 5. Al Rajhi (Fiesta RRC): +1m57.6s

Thu 20:09 - SS3: WRC2 casualty list
Yazeed Al Rajhi: smashed a front wheel on a rock and broke a lower suspension arm. Valeriy Gorban: Stopped at the 10.6km mark with a broken wheel. Later a stone broke the radiator. Retired.

Thu 20:04 - SS3: Tanak explains
He completes with the loss of more than four minutes. "Near the beginning of the stage we hit a rock in the line and lost power steering. Then we noticed he had a puncture so we stopped to change the wheel. The power steering was okay after that..."

Thu 20:00 - WRC top 5 after SS3
1. Latvala (VW): 27:31.0, 2. Ogier (VW): +5.3s, 3. Meeke (Citroen): +8.8s, 4. Hanninen (Hyundai): +24.0s, 5. Hirvonen (Ford): +24.4s

Thu 19:58 - SS3: Disaster for Tanak
The Estonian stopped at the 11.7km point. He's going again now but has lost the lead of the WRC2 category to Ketomaa.

Thu 19:54 - SS3: Puncture for Breen
He drops 45sec to the leaders after one of his Fiesta's front tyres deflates. "I felt the start of a puncture a third of the way through. It didn’t get any worse, I’m glad about that, but it definitely wasn't right. The stage was so rough."

Thu 19:51 - SS3: Jarkko Nikara out
The Finn has gone off the road and M-Sport have confirmed that he will go no further today. Both Nikara and his co-driver Jarkko Kalliolepo are okay.

Thu 19:45 - SS3: Ruts limit Hanninen charge
The Finn was third fastest on SS2, but found it impossible to push on the increasingly rutted road.

Thu 19:43 - SS3: Puncture for Henning
His Fiesta reaches the finish control with a flat left-hand front tyre. "Aaugh - very frustrating! There was a rock in the road, 9km in, I couldn't see it - it was in the middle of a corner." He completes 44.7sec slower than Latvala.

Thu 19:38 - SS3: Meeke close to a stage win
But he misses out by just 1.2sec. "I want a stage win! Okay, I was never really comfortable here and the ruts can really catch you out, but if you're committed the car works well!"

Thu 19:36 - SS3: Rough ride for Neuville
"A much better run than earlier, but the car kept jumping out of the ruts so it was hard to keep the line. On some occasions it was hard to keep hold of the steering wheel." His time is 7th quickest so far, 11.6sec off Latvala's pace.

Thu 19:32 - SS3: But Ostberg is still frustrated
"I'm struggling a lot with the car. I can’t drive like this. I will change it for tomorrow. I know what to do - I need change the set-up to make the car better."

Thu 19:30 - SS3: Mikkelsen happier
With a time that's 7sec adrift of his team-mates. "I tried to increase my speed in that one, but at the beginning it was very slippery and I had no confidence with the rear of the car - it was moving around a lot."

Thu 19:28 - SS3: Latvala matches Ogier's time
An identical 11m11.2s run from our rally leader who made some car set-up changes before the stage. "I went stiffer and higher but I struggled with understeer near the start. I got back into my rhythm near the middle."

Thu 19:23 - SS3: Last corner scare for Ogier
"I lost the front end on the final corner and I had to back off on the last straight. Not a bad stage though. More slippery that earlier, more mud and some small ruts, but not too bad." His time is 11m11.2s

Thu 19:16 - SS3: Weather update
Earlier storm has passed. Cloud lifting. No rain for more than an hour. Stage drying.

Thu 19:14 - Live car tracking now available
Via our new WRC+ service. Find out more at www.wrcplus.com

Thu 19:09 - SS3 Underway
Ogier started the repeat pass of Lankamaa at 1907hrs.

Thu 18:23 - Up next: Refuel and regroup
Crews head to Konnevesi for a regroup and remote refuel before the second pass of Lankamaa. Ogier will start the stage at 1907hrs. We'll be back then.

Thu 18:17 - WRC2 top 5 after SS2
1. Tanak (Fiesta R5): 17:40.5, 2. Ketomaa (Fiesta R5): +3.6s, 3. Brynildsen (Fiesta RRC): +24.4s, 4. Kruuda (208 T16): +24.6s, 5. Chardonnet (DS3 R5): +28.3s

Thu 18:10 - Key points from SS2
Latvala fastest again - extends rally lead to 5.3sec. First on the road Ogier grateful for the rain and moves up to second. Ostberg seventh and extremely frustrated by his lack of pace. A close battle - just 18.9sec covering the top seven drivers

Thu 18:01 - WRC top 5 after SS2
1. Latvala (VW): 16:19.8, 2. Ogier (VW): +5.3s, 3. Meeke (Citroen): +7.6s, 4. Hanninen (Hyundai): +7.8s, 5. Hirvonen (Ford): +14.9s

Thu 17:57 - SS2 weather update
The rain has stopped but there's still lots of standing water on the stage.

Thu 17:56 - SS2 stage details
In the past few years teams have used Jouhtikyla for private testing, but it now returns to the itinerary for the first time in 22 years. The road is fast and flowing with accurate pace notes essential as drivers flick their cars from crest to corner

Thu 17:54 - SS2: Kubica unflustered
The Pole has another decent stage. He's 9.5sec off Latvala's pace but keeping his driving under control. "You can’t compare my pace to that of the top drivers on these roads. We are trying to learn and drive consistently. We know this. No drama."

Thu 17:51 - SS2: Hanninen flies
Hyundai's Finnish ace goes third quickest. 'Okay, still we lost [to the Volkswagens] but it's not that easy. The main thing is keeping in the line and sometimes I was not able to do it. You have to be smooth and I know I can be smoother."

Thu 17:47 - SS2: Prokop frustrated
The Czech is 15.5sec slower than Latvala. "I can be better but I have no feeling for the grip. I just don’t know where the limit is."

Thu 17:45 - SS2: Meeke slips to third
A decent time from the Briton on SS2, but it's not enough to keep Ogier behind.

Thu 17:41 - SS2: Neuville overdriving
"My pace notes are too slow, and that's making me overdrive a bit - and that's not good for my confidence. I'm struggling a bit at the moment."

Thu 17:39 - SS2: Hirvonen hanging on
7.2sec slower than Latvala on stage and he's now 14.9sec behind overall. "Sebastien and Jari-Matti are are putting on an incredible speed. We’re trying to hang on in there."

Thu 17:36 - SS2: Ostberg fuming
He's 7.2sec slower than Latvala and his frustration is clear. "I don't understand it. It seems to be going well but the times are s**t."

Thu 17:34 - SS2: Steady start for Mikkelsen
He's 5.6sec slower than Latvala. "Okay, I would like to be quicker that Sebastien and Jari-Matti but I still don't trust the conditions yet. I'm looking to build my pace bit by bit."

Thu 17:32 - SS2: But Latvala's quicker
He completes 2.2sec quicker in 5m02.5s. "Very good grip in there. Only one slippy braking area. It's not so good for the spectators but for the drivers it's a good feeling."

Thu 17:30 - SS2: Ogier thanks the rain
The VW ace is through and delighted by the steady rain. "I was hoping for this for sure. This stage was very slippery with a lot of loose gravel so I'm happy it was wet. Not a bad stage, a few small mistakes but it's okay."

Thu 17:27 - WRC 2 casualty list
Chardonnet: Came too fast into a corner and hit a bank. Has a right-hand front puncture and maybe and left-hand front puncture too. Only has one spare. Pizzuti: Car driven by Max Rendina (see today's news in brief for more details) but appears to have gone off and damaged the rear suspension.

Thu 17:23 - WRC2 top 5 after SS1
1. Ketomaa (Fiesta R5): 12:19.1, 2. Tanak (Fiesta R5): +2.4s, 3. Brynildsen (Fiesta RRC): +17.6s, 4. Kruuda (208 T16): +17.8s, 5. Chardonnet (DS3 R5): +18.5s

Thu 17:11 - Key points from SS1
Latvala goes quickest to hold a 2.6sec rally lead. Heavy rain affects drivers running further down the start order. Rain mitigates the usual road cleaning effect

Thu 17:02 - WRC top 5 after SS1
1. Latvala (VW): 11:17.3, 2. Meeke (Citroen): +2.6s, 3. Ogier (VW): +3.1s, 4. Hanninen (Hyundai): +4.6s, 5. Hirvonen (Ford): +7.7s

Thu 16:58 - SS1: Damp start for Nikara
The Finn almost bagged sixth in a Mini here in 2013 until a shock absorber failed on the penultimate stage. Back this year in a Fiesta RS and getting off to a wet start. “In the beginning it was okay but in the second half there was lots of rain and water in the ruts. I had to take it very carefully.” He completes 12th fastest, 26.8sec off Latvala's stage winning time.

Thu 16:51 - SS1: Breen hits monsoon
The Irishman completes 54.4sec off Latvala's stage winning time. "That was a baptism of fire. For some reason I just can’t seem get a clear stage - it was the same in Sweden. It was an absolute monsoon in there."

Thu 16:45 - SS1: All okay for Kubica
"Quite a good warm up. Quite good. Only one small mistake at a junction, but nothing happened so okay. We got some heavy rain for the last 8km."

Thu 16:43 - SS1 rain update
It's falling more heavily now, to the detriment of drivers further down the start order who, in dry conditions, would expect a cleaner road swept of loose gravel by the cars ahead. Instead, the surface is deteriorating.

Thu 16:38 - SS1: Meeke second quickest
A fabulous start for the Briton, who is 2.6sec off Latvala's pace: "Yeah, it's good, but there’s a long, long way to go." He's loving the Finnish scenery too. "What an incredible place to drive a rally car, eh?"

Thu 16:34 - SS1: Neuville held back?
The Belgian feels the damp road was sapping the power from his Hyundai. "The road is getting more loose. In places I feel like we are not going forward."

Thu 16:31 - SS1: Hirvonen awake
He's 7.7sec slower than Latvala. "Okay, that was a bit of a wake up call but overall pretty good. Jari-Matti has pulled away a bit but we are there in the fight."

Thu 16:30 - SS1: Ostberg uncomfortable
"That was a difficult stage, I'm struggling to find the good grip. There's a lot of variation, you can see that because the road is different colours in places."

Thu 16:27 - SS1: Mikkelsen slower
He's 13sec slower than Latvala but sounds satisfied enough. "I'm quite happy with my run, no moments, it's a good start."

Thu 16:25 - SS1: Latvala quickest so far
An awesome time for Ogier's Volkswagen team-mate who goes 3.1sec quicker. He likes the rain, too. "It was definitely helping. The first two corners were a bit slippy but after that I had very good grip. In some places I probably could have pushed harder but you never know how much to risk."

Thu 16:22 - SS1: Ogier through
In a benchmark time of 11m20.4s. "For sure I didn't take the full risk. I could have been faster but in the rain, and in the standing water I was not flat-out."

Thu 16:12 - SS1: Ogier underway
Our World Champion, and last year's Finland winner, has begun the stage in his Volkswagen

Thu 16:11 - SS1 weather
Lankamaa is 48km from Jyvaskyla, and although it has rained there in the last hour it has stopped now. Skies looking threatening though, so more downpours are likely

Thu 16:07 - SS1 details
Finland doesn’t mess around, and the event gets underway with a proper challenge. At 23.44km Lankamaa is the longest test of the rally and features a dizzying mix of conditions: wide and narrow roads, crests, jumps and dips, all tackled flat-out

Thu 16:00 - Weather forecast
Looks a bit more encouraging for the spectators, with dry and sunny conditions returning for Friday, Saturday and Sunday

Thu 15:56 - Weather update
For the last few weeks it has been beautifully hot and sunny in Jyvaskyla, with only the occasional thunderstorm to top up the lakes. Today was fine and dry for shakedown, but the clouds gathered after lunch and it is now chucking it down with rain

Thu 15:55 - Start order
For Friday AND Saturday is based on championship standings, which puts leader Ogier first on the road. Here’s the full World Rally Car start order: 1. Ogier, 2. Latvala, 3. Mikkelsen, 4. Ostberg, 5. Hirvonen, 6. Neuville, 7. Meeke, 8. Evans, 9. Prokop, 10. H. Solberg, 11. Hanninen, 12. Kubica, 13. Paddon, 14. Breen, 15. Nikara, 16. Solowow

Thu 15:55 - Cars have left service
and are en route to the start of SS1 Lankamaa, which kicks off at 1608hrs local time

Thu 15:55 - So four stages tonight
and still three days of action go until the winner crosses the finish ramp on Sunday at 1500hrs

Thu 15:54 - There’s also Jouhtikyla
once a popular test venue for WRC teams, plus the day-closing Harju street stage which runs through the heart of Jyvaskyla and is making a return after a 16 year absence

Thu 15:54 - Coming up
Thursday’s opening leg taking crews northeast of host city Jyvaskyla for two passes of the Lankamaa stage, which runs close to Finnish rallying legend Juha Kankkunen’s home and is the longest of the rally at 23.44 kilometres

Thu 15:54 - Hello from Jyvaskyla
and welcome to our live text coverage of Neste Oil Rally Finland - round eight of the FIA World Rally Championship and the fastest of the lot

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