Saturday | 02 Aug 2014

Rally Finland Update #9

Leg 3: Saturday – SS14 Mökkiperä (13.84km)

Mökkiperä is a Finland classic but this year it was run in the opposite direction to normal. The first part was on flat roads with long straights and 90 degree corners, before turning into a high-speed roller coaster over big jumps and through fast bends.

Leader Jari-Matti Latvala extended his Neste Oil Rally Finland advantage to 23.7sec after setting fastest time through Saturday’s opening Mökkiperä test.

The fight for second intensified as third fastest for Sébastien Ogier moved the Frenchman to within 0.9sec of Kris Meeke. But Ogier acknowledged it could have been better.

Martin Prokop - non-starter

“I almost missed a junction near the start and lost a couple of seconds. Not the start I wanted but that’s life. I have to do better on the next one,” said the Volkswagen Polo R driver.

Meeke was unperturbed by Ogier’s move. “Losing 0.7sec over 14km to the world champion on an attack? I’ll take that. If he keeps nibbling away at me I’m not too bothered. I have to drive my own roads against my own stopwatch,” said the Citroen DS3 pilot.

Further down the order the three-way fight for fourth between Andreas Mikkelsen, Mads Østberg and Mikko Hirvonen also remained unaltered. However, Østberg admitted he lost time after twice braking too late for junctions. “Maybe I tried too much,” he said.

A non-starter this morning was Martin Prokop, who crashed his Ford Fiesta RS yesterday afternoon and the damage was too great to continue.

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