Mon 08 Aug 2022

Hyundai motivated by Finland success

Hyundai Motorsport’s deputy team director Julien Moncet says Ott Tänak’s win at Secto Rally Finland will motivate his squad to continue pushing forward.

Tänak’s triumph marked Hyundai Motorsport’s first-ever win at the classic Finnish fixture and Moncet insisted, despite the success, that his team will not be resting on its laurels. 

Things haven’t been easy for the Alzenau-based squad in this first season of the WRC’s hybrid-powered era, 

Mechanical gremlins plagued its drivers early in the year and, before last weekend, the i20 N Rally1 had only been victorious at Rally Italia Sardegna - again, Tänak was driving. 

While Moncet accepted there is still work to be done, he is keen to build on the positives with the next round at Ypres Rally Belgium (18 - 21 August) only 10 days away.

“Ott has been outstanding all weekend,” lauded the Frenchman. “It was a huge battle with Kalle until the very last stage and we had no reliability issues. 

“The car, despite all the difficulties, is able to win and I think this is a positive point. We know we still have a lot of work to do and we are frustrated when, despite all our efforts, we can not transform that into proper results. 

“Now this is the second time we have won this year - we know it’s possible and we should not forget about that. Sometimes it’s good to look at the positives and use this positive attitude to move forward and work even harder,” he added. 

Thierry Neuville finished fifth overall at the high-speed fixture after struggling for confidence in his car, while Oliver Solberg crashed out on the first corner of the opening stage on Friday morning.

Moncet believes the young Swede needs to put that disappointment behind him and insisted that Hyundai’s driver line-up will remain unchanged this year. 

“I think he has to forget about Finland and now focus on Ypres,” he explained. “Oliver will be back in the car for a test this week and I’m sure in Belgium he can produce a good result. 

“He has shown some good performances in the past, so there’s no reason why not this year as well. We have to forget and move on and we will stick with our plans for the rest of the season.” 

Thierry Neuville won Belgium’s WRC debut last year and will be one of the favourites for victory next week. Tänak and Solberg will also contest the asphalt fixture.

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