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Mon 14 Nov 2022

Tänak reflects on Hyundai career

Ott Tänak signed off on three years with Hyundai Motorsport with a second place at last week’s FORUM8 Rally Japan.

The Estonian arrived at the Alzenau team as a world champion at the top of the 2020 season, having taken the 2019 title with Toyota.

He proceeded to finish third in his maiden season aboard an i20 N WRC, fifth last season and second this year following his most successful campaign with three victories.

It wasn’t all plain sailing for the 35-year-old, however. He endured arguably the biggest crash of his career on his Hyundai debut at the 2020 Rallye Monte-Carlo. Since then he has won five times for the Korean manufacturer.

“We came to fight for another [drivers'] championship and this didn’t happen," Tänak said reflecting on his time with Hyundai. "So obviously it wasn’t so successful. But I made some friends who will probably be friends for life, so it was worth it.”

And on the highlights: “Winning in Finland [this season] was good, when Kalle [Rovanperä] was expected to win with Toyota and winning in Belgium to beat Thierry [Neuville] was also nice.

“Here in Japan, we did all we could do. We knew we were missing some speed [from the car] on Tarmac, but I don’t think there was any speed left in the car.”

Talking about the future, Tänak added: “I have no contract right now. I’ll go home and see what the next few weeks brings.”