Esapekka Lappi made a cautious start to the rally, having had his pre-event asphalt testing affected by rain. Lappi showed the strong pace of the Yaris WRC on Saturday as he rose from 10th to sixth place. He began Sunday in sixth position but was forced to retire after he hit a barrier on the second stage of the morning.
“On the first stages I was not confident enough, as the grip was much higher than in my test, but step-by-step I found the confidence. I wasn’t completely happy with the set-up but we managed to improve it and the car felt better and better: end of Saturday it was the best that the car has ever been on asphalt. I missed out on a stage win on SS10 by only 0.1 seconds.
I am annoyed with my mistake on Sunday which prevented us from finishing the rally. There was a change in the road surface and it was more slippery than I expected. I didn’t think it would make that much difference to the grip but it did. It is something that I will try to learn for the future. I have gained some good experience driving this car on this event and the speed on Saturday was not so bad in the afternoon. So there are some positives to take for sure.”