SS19 victory for Latvala – on track for the win

The final day of Rally Finland is upon us – there are just two stages today, both using the 14.4km Myhinpää route. First up is a regular stage, with this afternoon’s re-run being the all-important Power Stage.
Jari-Matti Latvala
Jari-Matti Latvala

These two stages are all that stand between Volkswagen’s Jari-Matti Latvala and the home rally victory that he’s longed for for so long. And through this stage he was able to extend his lead over Sebastien Ogier by another nine tenths of a second, despite a good run by the Frenchman.

‘It’s a relief!’ reported Latvala. ‘What a rollercoaster. It’s an impressive stage, I must say, jumping in places I wasn’t expecting to. One stage to go.’ He’s got a 14.1 second lead over Ogier going into the last stage, who’s got the three bonus points from the Power Stage in his sights.

‘Just a high speed recce.’ Ogier commented. ‘For sure it’s an impressive stage, I have a lot of respect for it. There is nothing to fight for, so I try to work on my notes for the Power Stage.’

Kris Meeke returns to the stages today having retired yesterday due to an off. His time of 6:29, 2.3 seconds down on Latvala, unfortunately proves that he could well have gone onto a comfortable podium finish had it not been for his incident. He did have a hairy moment as he collected an advertising banner after running wide over a jump. ‘I was on the line after the crest, so I had to take it down…’ he smiled.

Mads Ostberg, Ott Tanak and Elfyn Evans complete the top six. All attention will now be on the Power Stage – will Latvala aim for top points from the weekend, or go for a smoother run. And can Ogier pull out that pace that we’ve always seen from him in Power Stages? It goes live at 13:08 local time.

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