Neuville hints Hyundai's quicker evolution than before after Lappi's affiliation

Thierry Neuville believes that Hyundai is evolving much quicker than before after his teamwork with Esapekka Lappi as both of them are working in the same direction and says that his second place in Estonia feels like a victory for him.

The Belgian driver finished in second place overall last weekend and was leading Rally Estonia at the end of Friday morning, but afterwards Kalle Rovanpera stole his lead and since the opening stage of Friday afternoon no one could catch him. Despite the fact that Toyota introduced an upgraded engine from Rally Estonia onwards, Hyundai was able to secure a double podium there and the i20N did not lack pace as there were improvements to the dampers, the brakes, the rear wing and the front and rear geometry. However, Neuville's weekend was not so perfect as he mentioned understeer on the entry and oversteer in the ruts in Stage 6 while he had a problem with the brakes towards the end of SS7. In addition to that, he suffered from a front right puncture in SS12, but luckily he did not lose so much time and managed to hold his position against Esapekka Lappi and Elfyn Evans at the end of Saturday morning. Finally, he had a problem with the diff pressures in SS16 while he lost the rear in a slow corner at the beginning of SS18.

"Actually second feels like a victory because Kalle was out of the competition this weekend", Neuville said.

"It feels good. 

"The best thing is I felt comfortable in the car and I was able to drive with my usual rhythm at such a fast event. 

"This gives me a lot of motivation for Finland next week.

"The car has evolved. We were far off last year and Ott was even struggling to be close to the podium. 

"We have a good car and we have been doing lots of testing on Finnish roads, which are similar, and I'm getting more used to it.

"With Esapekka, we work in the same direction and we had the same set-up all weekend because the balance, grip and speed we want is the same. 

"As a team, we evolve much quicker than before".


Photo Credits: Hyundai

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