Here’s what the Ford Fiesta RS driver had to say about the result – and what happened on that final decisive stage.
Q: Thierry, just like Finland - a great fight! The final stage was thrilling to watch and it seemed like you gave your all! How are you feeling?
TN: “I feel very happy with our performance this weekend. We were the only crew who was always in a position to fight for victory from the start to the finish. This performance throughout the weekend without any big mistakes is good.
“I can only congratulate Dani and Carlos [del Barrio] and hope that soon it will be our turn. Second place is still a great result for us and I’m very satisfied with our performance in Germany. At least we tried, and our time will come.”
Q: Tell us about he final stage. You and Dani were neck and neck midway through, but you emerged 53 seconds behind. What happened?
“I decided we were going to go for it on the final stage, but there was a corner towards the start that was much dirtier than I’d expected and I went slightly wide, which cost me two seconds.
“We then gave it everything – driving flat-out to regain the time we had lost and try to win in front of all our supporters. The split-times showed that approach was working well, but then coming out of the forest, I mistook one fast left-hand corner in the vineyards for another and we went off. By the time Nicolas announced the pacenote, it was already too late. Luckily we were able to rejoin the road and make it to the finish without losing position.”
Q: On Saturday, conditions were very difficult and you had a bit of a moment. Talk us though what happened.
TN: “We were going quite well. There was a very tricky place. I was very surprised about the lack of traction. We went wide into the logs, but I had a good reaction to spin the car and we could get back onto the road again.”
Q: Has this been the biggest battle of your career to date?
TN: “I remember one of the IRC rounds I did in the past, in which I had a huge battle with Mikkelsen. That is what I did today. We had nothing to lose, we decided to try and see where we end up. I am happy and pleased with my second place.”