Abiteboul asks from Hyundai to push as hard as the team can for the rest of 2023



The team principal of Hyundai Motorsport, Cyril Abiteboul, believes that his team must push as hard as it can for the last three rounds of this year as the Koreans did not manage to repeat their last year's success at Acropolis Rally last week.

Hyundai Motorsport wrote history in Greece last year as Thierry Neuville, Ott Tanak and Dani Sordo secured the first 1-2-3 finish of the team in World Rally Championship. The Alzenau-based team hoped to repeat this result in Greece last weekend, but Toyota drivers were in strong form while Esapekka Lappi was not able to fight with the frontrunners as his i20N suffered from many issues. On the other hand, Dani Sordo was struggling to find pace with his car as he mentioned understeer and followed a wrong tyre strategy. Neuville was the leader of Acropolis Rally at the end of Saturday morning with six stages remaining until the end, but his hopes to claim Hyundai's second victory of the season ended up in Stage 10 where the front-right suspension of his car failed after hitting a hole on a muddy section. Afterwards, Sordo became the leading Hyundai driver and was in second place overall, but he slipped behind Elfyn Evans after the end of the opening stage of Sunday, therefore he finished at the lowest place of the podium. Finally, Lappi completed the top five on the overall classification after the problems he faced with his car during last weekend while it is noteworthy that Hyundai has won only one event in 2023 compared to Toyota that has claimed eight victories in ten rallies.

"We wanted to make sure we finished this event on the podium, which Dani and C├índido achieved, but we are all a bit disappointed with the overall result of the weekend", Abiteboul said. 

"The whole team wanted to do well at Acropolis Rally, particularly as it was the best result of the season in 2022, and we all wanted to replicate that success. 

"We still demonstrated that the car was working, the team was well prepared, and the crews were highly motivated. 

"Like other competitors this weekend, we stumbled on some of the specific challenges of this rally and need to assess to what extent they can be avoided in the future. 

"Now we will focus our efforts on fighting for wins in the final events of the season. 

"Everyone in the team knows we are on a steep learning curve and to do well next year, we need to push as hard as we can this season".


Photo Credits: Hyundai

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