Elfyn Evans admits that his career-best WRC finish at Tour de Corse - Rally de France has given his confidence a much-needed lift after a torrid run of results.
The Welshman and his co-driver Daniel Barritt were the surprise package in Corsica, finishing second in their M-Sport Ford Fiesta RS and leading the rally on the opening day. It was their first attempt at the event but they took their second podium of the season as well as M-Sport’s best result of the year.
Five months after securing his maiden WRC podium in Argentina, and three weeks after a miserable time at the WRC round in Australia, Evans said the timing couldn't have been better.
"We needed a boost because it hasn't been going well since Argentina really," Evans told wrc.com. "We haven't had one good result since then, so we were having a difficult time of it. It's fair to say that we're pleased to have this now."
Evans jumped into the lead on the opening day with a time on a storm-lashed stage three that was 30 seconds faster than his rivals. On Saturday he slipped behind Jari-Matti Latvala and on Sunday he had to fend off a hard-charging Andreas Mikkelsen.
"It was a difficult balance on the last day," Evans explained. "We knew there was no chance to catch Jari-Matti, so it was just a case of just keeping Andreas behind. And when you fall into that mentality - taking that little edge off just to make sure you're safe - it's surprising how much you can lose. The Power Stage was difficult but we did enough in the last sector to keep the place."
Having pulled his season back on track, Evans is hoping for another strong result at the next round in Spain later this month.
"We have to aim for a podium again," he said. "Okay, I don't expect the conditions will be as variable as Corsica but we want to be up there competitive again. Setting competitive stage times is the biggest buzz for me. That's what makes me tick and I want to do the same in Spain."