Recce notes: ADAC Rallye Deutschland
We've driven this year's route. Here's what we saw.
Sébastien Ogier. Volkswagen Polo R: (above) “I have mixed feelings about the rally. On the one hand, I won there in 2011 and have always been fast. On the other hand, I experienced the pain of minor errors on the narrow streets being penalised immediately in 2014. But that is history. We want to do better this year and that is definitely possible.”
Hayden Paddon. Hyundai i20: “This event will be more difficult for us, especially with what I would describe as three team-mates who are tarmac specialists. This is a surface we don’t have a lot of experience on.”
Thierry Neuville. Hyundai i20: “We have really good memories from Rallye Deutschland last year. Getting a first win in the first season as a team was something unexpected, and we are going to try our best this year so that hopefully we have the same speed as last year and the same confidence.”
Ott Tänak. Ford Fiesta RS: “My last proper Tarmac event with a world rally car was at the end of 2012 so there will be a lot to learn. This is one of my favourite Tarmac rallies and we have done well in the past. Each stage is different so it’s a real test of how quickly you can adapt to the changing conditions.”
Kevin Abbring Hyundai i20: “I have competed in this rally twice before, but it was about five or six years ago. It is a very tricky tarmac event, as well as our first asphalt event in the Hyundai i20 WRC car."
Jari-Matti Latvala. Volkswagen Polo R: “The win in Finland has given me a massive motivational boost. Things weren't going very smoothly before that, but at my home rally I showed that I can prevail in a head-to-head battle.”
Kris Meeke. DS 3: “I’d prefer it to be hot and dry, although the weather is always very difficult to predict. If it rains, the early runners drag a lot of mud on the lines and it becomes more difficult. Finishing on the podium here is a realistic goal. If I manage to be consistent and keep out of trouble, I know that we’ll be at the front. But anything can happen!”
Mads Østberg. DS 3: “It’s a great event, which calls for a lot of concentration. The roads vary a lot throughout the rally so you need to keep adjusting your driving style. A top 5 or top 6 finish would be a pretty good result, because we need to score points for the championships.”
Andreas Mikkelsen. Volkswagen Polo R: “My retirement at the Rally Finland means that I lost second place in the drivers' championship. I want to regain that with a good result in Germany. My aim is to be fighting for a top three spot.”
Elfyn Evans. Ford Fiesta RS: “We’ve had two extensive tests in the lead-up so I’m feeling well prepared and can’t wait to get going. We’ve not had the best of luck in the last few events, but this is where I want to turn that around. We’ll be looking for a clean and tidy rally in which we can show some good speed. If we can do that, anything is possible.”