Tänak won all nine stages on the non-championship Piedmont event and feels he laid the foundations to finding more speed from a car he felt didn’t suit him when he finished fourth at the Croatia Rally in April.
“The plan for Alba was to clarify the feeling from Croatia,” said Tänak. “We were there to make sure of the topics we need to still work on during the summer before the Tarmac season starts later this year. In Croatia, the car handling and balance were not really suiting to me.
“We still have a few months before [the next Tarmac WRC round] in Ypres and we will find out how much we’ve been able to do when we get there.
“We tried some things in Alba, but that rally was about learning rather than trying to fix things. The target wasn’t to win the rally in Italy, it was to learn more and collect more data – we have done that.”
Tänak finished almost 90sec adrift of winner Sébastien Ogier in Zagreb in April and admitted afterwards that he lacked performance and felt ‘far out of my comfort zone’.
After next week’s Safari Rally Kenya (24 - 27 June), half the remaining FIA World Rally Championship rounds run on asphalt, starting with Renties Ypres Rally Belgium (13 - 15 August). The final two events take place on sealed-surface roads in Spain and Japan.