Latvala explains Rovanpera's absence from Powerstage in Finland

The team principal of Toyota Gazoo Raicng WRT, Jari-Matti Latvala, explains the reasons why Kalle Rovanpera restarted on Sunday under the regulations of Rally2 and why he retired from the last stage of Rally Finland.

Rovanpera was in fourth position overall at the end of Stage 9, but he was forced to retire in Stage 10 after the crash he had.

Specifically, he went into a ditch after having run wide after a left-hander as he lost the rear of his Ξ₯aris twice. 

After this destabilization, he went straight off the line and he was forced to retire as there was a pile of stone on the outside of the corner which he clouted with the front of the car resulting in damaging the front bumper.

However, the Toyota mechanics managed to repair Rovanpera's Yaris at the end of Saturday and the Finn driver restarted on Sunday under the regulations of Rally2.

He competed in the three first Sunday stages despite the fact that his back was aching after the crash he had on Saturday with the intention to score points for the manufacturer's championship if one of his teammates [Elfyn Evans, Sebastien Ogier] retired during the last day of Rally Finland.

Since Ogier and Evans finished the penultimate stage of the rally, Toyota decided to withdraw Rovanpera from Powerstage as the last one was in pain and had to rest.

"Yesterday when he had the accident when he hit the sand bank and I think his arms were a bit crossed, and basically in the hit his arm was pushed backwards and he got some pain on the back" said Latvala on Sunday.

"He went to the doctor and everything was fine but of course the muscles are really solid and he was not feeling that comfortable to drive.

"We just wanted him to drive the morning in case something happened to our main two cars so he could secure some championship points.

"But with things looking good we told him he didn’t need to drive the Power Stage.

"This was the target, he was only going to drive when it was needed and there was no need to put extra stress on the body because in two weeks’ time we have Catalunya, and he needs to be testing at the end of next week, so it is important that he can just rest now".


Photo Credits: Toyota

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