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Rally de Portugal - Post-event press conference

Jari-Matti, congratulations on your first podium for Volkswagen Motorsport! It has been a good weekend for you here in Portugal, how do you feel?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
When I was walking to this building I was thinking to myself what a relief – I have not felt this good for a long, long time!

Q:
After two stages you said you still weren't feeling confident - but then everything started to click into place - what changed?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
I decided I had to drive myself, I explain that I need experience, but one day I have to deliver the result. I was pushing myself, forcing myself to drive fast and it started to help. I have been letting myself think I can take the experience and the speed will just come, but it doesn't work that way – you have to work for it. My confidence is coming in the car. In Argentina I will have a different set-up which will suit me better, but still I am really, really happy with this result. The start of the season has been tough – learning, but also disappointing. Now I see my year opening. Finally, my Championship can start!

Q:
Did you turn on the aggression?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
Yeah, a little bit. I haven't been feeling so well during the winter time. I was expecting more from myself and I couldn't get it. The car has been quick, but I have been somewhere on another planet…

Q:
You're back now though… we're in Portugal, by the way!

Jari-Matti Latvala:
Thanks! It's good to be back!

Q:
You experienced some problems this morning, what happened?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
We headed to the first stage this morning, but five kilometres before the start, the car pulled to the right when I accelerated. We checked the wheel nuts, I thought it was a wheel loose. Then we went to the stage and did three corners and then we lost drive to the front. I nearly had a spin and almost went off the road. It was a driveshaft and inner CV joint which had broken. But then this began to overheat the front diff – so we only had drive from the rear. For 70 kilometres I had only rear-wheel drive. I drive a historic Escort which is rear-wheel drive and I have to say the Escort is easier to drive like this!

Q:
Now that you have your first podium are we ready to see you back challenging for wins?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
Well, the man on my right [Ogier] is strong – he's in a strong mood. The French revolution continues after Sebastien Loeb retires, it's hard to make the Finnish revolution, even though there are two [Finnish crews] here – it's not easy! I hope to challenge at some point: Argentina onwards would be nice, but it's one step at a time.

Q:
Miikka, did you ever feel it could be all over?

Miikka Anttila:
Yes, it was an amazing feeling to think it couldn't happen again! We were one-two for Volkswagen. When we heard Seb is having the problem, we thought it could be the same and then we knew we would lose more in the next stage as well. Luckily we only lost one place in the result. We are third and we have to be happy. The diff problems could have stopped us, so in a way we are happy.

Q:
Did you think there is any possibility of pushing Sebastien?

Miikka Anttila:
Let's say that option was not discussed – such a subject doesn't need to be discussed in our team. It's not the point to start to fight together.

Q:
Jost, both drivers are on the podium. It could have been a 1-2 but this morning the drivers both experienced problems at the same time on the same stage! What was the feeling in service this morning?

Jost Capito:


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Jari-Matti Latvala (FIN) Miikka Anttila (FIN), Volkswagen Polo WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport
Jari-Matti Latvala (FIN) Miikka Anttila (FIN), Volkswagen Polo WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport
Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) Jarmo Lehtinen (FIN), Citroen DS3 WRC, Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team
Mikko Hirvonen (FIN), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team
Sebastien Ogier (F) Julien Ingrassia (F), Volkswagen Polo WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport
Podium, Sebastien Ogier (F) Julien Ingrassia (F), Volkswagen Polo WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport, winners

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