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Wilson impresses with fight back to take eighth.

Britain's Matthew Wilson stormed back up the order to finish in eighth on the Rallye de France-Tour de Corse on Sunday, after ending the opening day down in 14th position.

Wilson got off to a poor start in Corsica and he was lucky to be able to continue following a mistake in SS3, when he missed a braking point and slide off the road. The incident though still cost him 40 seconds as spectators had to help him back onto the stage.

After that though he kept plugging away and on Saturday he hauled his Stobart Ford Focus up to ninth, before inheriting P8 in SS14 on Sunday, when Brice Tirabassi retired - although the gap between the two had already been cut to 4.3 seconds, after the 21-year-old was a fantastic fifth fastest in SS13.

It is his fifth points' finish of the season and the result was branded 'impressive' by both Stobart Group CEO Andrew Tinkler and Ford boss, Malcolm Wilson, who is of course his dad.

"The last two days have been extremely positive and after our problem on Friday when we lost time, it just shows that anything can happen on a rally," said Wilson Jr.

"We have had some good battles in climbing back up the leaderboard into eighth place.

"It's been a very useful rally to learn more about the tyres and how to drive on these twisty, technical stages and a great boost in confidence to have set decent splits and have a really solid two days."

Fellow Brit Barry Clark and Henning Solberg meanwhile were also running under the Stobart Ford banner in Corsica - along with Jari-Matti Latvala, who like Wilson was nominated to score manufacturers' points. Clark and Henning brought their Ford Focus RS WRC07's home in tenth and 15th respectively.

"I'm really very happy; to get up into the top 10 in my first tarmac rally in a world rally car is absolutely amazing," noted Clark. "I have just really built things up over the weekend and focused on improving my driving and making it to the end of the event. It was also a surprise to be beating some of the full time manufacturer drivers along the way. I prepared well for this rally and it all paid off."

"I like the stages here especially with the twisty, narrow sections and my driving was really coming together on the last day," added Henning.

"The rally went well, apart from the two punctures, and my final result doesn't exactly reflect the advances we have made and the good times we set today. I'm still not a big tarmac fan though and I am definitely looking forward to Japan and to getting back onto gravel."


Related Pictures

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Andrew - Unregistered

October 14, 2008 3:51 PM

Isn''t it time any of Guy Wilks, Kris Meeke or Andreas Mikelson was given Wilson''s seat? In three full world championship seasons Wilson has achieved nothing. It is all very well tripping out the "gaining experience" line time and time again but at some stage speed has to be shown - Loeb was 4th fastest on his first stage in WRC Xsara car. Malcolm wake up and smell coffee the boy can''t cut it.



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