TITLE FIGHT HOTS UP AS TÄNAK REPEATS GERMANY WIN

//TITLE FIGHT HOTS UP AS TÄNAK REPEATS GERMANY WIN

TITLE FIGHT HOTS UP AS TÄNAK REPEATS GERMANY WIN

OTT Tänak clinched back-to-back ADAC Rallye Deutschland victories on Sunday afternoon following a dramatic final leg.

The Estonian won the four-day asphalt encounter by 39.2sec in a Toyota Yaris, repeating his 2017 success and securing a second consecutive WRC win after triumphing in Finland three weeks ago.

The result brings third-placed Tänak into closer contention for the drivers’ championship, with four rounds left to run including the final at Kennards Hire Rally Australia on 15-18 November.

Thierry Neuville extended his championship lead by inheriting an unexpected second place in a Hyundai i20 after Jari-Matti Latvala retired his Yaris with hydraulic problems and Dani Sordo stopped with engine damage after crashing his i20.

Esapekka Lappi finished third in another Toyota.

Sébastien Ogier won the final Power Stage to claim five bonus points in a Ford Fiesta. Tänak took four points for second with Lappi scoring three in third. Craig Breen, driving a Citroën C3, and Neuville took two and one point respectively.

Outright final standings, ADAC Rallye Deutschland (provisional, Rd 9 of 13):

1 Ott Tänak/Martin Järveoja (Toyota Yaris WRC) 3h03m36.9s
2 Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +39.2s
3 Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm (Toyota Yaris WRC) +1:00.9
4 Sebastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (Ford Fiesta WRC) +1:34.5
5 Teemu Suninen/Mikko Markkula (Ford Fiesta WRC) +2:02.9
6 Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jaeger (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +2:13.8
7 Craig Breen/Scott Martin (Citroen C3 WRC) +2:39.1

FIA World Rally Championship for drivers (after Rd 9):

1 Thierry Neuville 172 points
2 Sébastien Ogier 149
3 Ott Tänak 136
4 Esapekka Lappi  88
5 Andreas Mikkelsen 65
6 Dani Sordo 60
7 Jari-Matti Latvala 55
8 Elfyn Evans 52
9  Mads Ostberg 48
10 Kris Meeke 43

FIA World Rally Championship for manufacturers (after Rd 9):

1 Hyundai WRT 254 points
2 Toyota Gazoo Racing 241
3 M-Sport Ford WRT 224
4 Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT 159

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Chris Nixon

Chris Nixon is Media Manager for Kennards Hire Rally Australia.