It was a frustrating weekend for Andreas Mikkelsen at Rally Spain, and he says he is still struggling to find the good-feeling with the car on the sealed surface.
Rally Spain is the only event on the calendar that runs on both gravel and tarmac. Andreas Mikkelsen and co-driver Anders Jaeger got well underway on the gravel day, and also secured a fastest stage time on the opening day on Friday. By the end of the first day, they were only 13 seconds behind a podium position.
Saturday the rally switched to tarmac, and from the sunny and warm Friday, Saturday came with rain and much colder temperatures. Making the tyre-choices very challenging. – I don’t think my choice were the best for the morning, it was difficult to find any grip and to get into the rhythm, Andreas says.
Sunday came with drier conditions, quite cold temperatures but the sun were out. The final loop worked better with setup and tyre-choice Andreas told, and in the end he managed to secure a point for the championship. – It has been a very frustrating and difficult weekend. We did a lot of preparations for the tarmac ahead of the event, and I felt we took a step in the right direction. But we didn’t get to use any of it until the final loop. But we were a lot closer to both Thierry and Dani, and that must be seen as a step in the right direction. That said, I do struggle with driving the car the way I want. I’m not driving at pace at all, and I’m not able to get it to work on the tarmac. If I push more the car understeer or oversteer, right now I just have to do a lot more work to get his to work.
It’s only one event to go for the 2018 season, in the middle of November the championship travels to Australia for the final round. – Going home now to analyse Rally Spain closely, but soon we have to start preparing for Rally Australia – one of our favourite events. We were leading there last year until we had a double puncture, and I’m thinking it will be good to start an event which I know I’m able to perform well at!
Overall classification Rally Spain 2018
2 Ogier +2,9
3 Evans +16,5
4 Neuville +17,0
5 Sordo +18,6
6 Tanak +1.03,9
7 Lappi +1.16,6
8 Latvala +1.26,4
9 Breen +2.07,0
10 Mikkelsen +2.48,2