Poland podium for Huttunen

Hyundai development driver Jari Huttunen finished a close second at last weekend’s Rally Poland, as he builds experience before his next WRC appearance at Dayinsure Wales Rally GB (4-7 October).

The Finn won seven of 15 stages in an i20 R5, eight weeks since his last loose-surface event at Neste Rally Finland.

Tackling his maiden season in a four-wheel-drive car, the 24-year-old adopted an aggressive approach to the Polish stages to help understand more about the car ahead of his sixth WRC 2 appearance of the year in Wales.

“For every stage I was on maximum attack, which is where I learn the most about the car and get the most out of the weekend,” he said.

“The roads were fast but very different in how you had to drive them compared to any rally I’ve done this season so far.”

Accompanied by co-driver Antti Linnaketo, Huttunen battled at the front throughout and went into Sunday’s final six stages just 11 seconds behind leader Nikolay Gryazin.

The gap was down to 9sec before an impact with a bank in SS13 forced lengthy repairs on the following road section and Huttunen collected a 10-second penalty for arriving at the penultimate test one minute late. He fought back hard, winning the final two stages, to finish just 8.3sec behind Gryazin

“The battle with Gryazin was really fun,” he said. “Obviously second place is a great result, and we can take the positives from the weekend to our next start.”

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