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Wilson delighted with run to fifth.

Stobart Ford's Matthew Wilson has moved up to sixth position in World Rally Championship standings after chalking up a last gasp fifth place finish on the 2009 Rally Cyprus.

The British driver struggled in the early stages of the mixed-surface event, Wilson unable to match his closest rivals on the tarmac surface to end leg one in eighth position.

However, a return to gravel invigorated Wilson's hopes as he steadily climbed the leaderboard, jumping three places to fifth at the end of the day having managed the third quickest time on the leg's longest stage.

With just three stages of the event remaining, Wilson looked to have blown his chances when he stalled at the start of SS13, losing ten seconds and fifth place to Citroen's Sebastien Ogier.

However, Wilson responded in the best way possible on the final encounter of the rally with his first ever main stage victory, while he got fifth place back when Ogier crashed out close to the finish line.

“It has been a brilliant weekend,” he said. “I had a slow start on Friday as I struggled on the asphalt but the next two days more than made up for it. We put ourselves under pressure stalling on the long stage today and losing ten seconds, but that meant we went into the last stage with the pressure back on Ogier.

“We were three seconds up with a few kilometres to go and I think the pressure got to him and he ended up sliding off just before the end. This signifies a big step forward for me; we pushed hard during the weekend but we were always well within our limits and that's really encouraging.”


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Matthew Wilson (GBR) Scott Martin (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC, Monza, [Credit: Hyundai Motorsport]
Podium 1st Australian - Molly Taylor (AUS) Bill Hayes (AUS) Subaru Impreza WRX Sti
Podium - Volkswagen
Podium - Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) Anders Jaeger Synnevag (NOR) Volkswagen Polo R WRC
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Podium, 1st Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) Anders Jaeger Synnevag (NOR) Volkswagen Polo R WRC, 2nd Sebastien Ogier (FRA) Julien Ingrassia (FRA) Volkswagen Polo R WRC, 3rd Thierry Neuville (BEL) Nicolas Gilsoul (BEL) Hyundai i20 WRC
Podium - Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) Anders Jaeger Synnevag (NOR) Volkswagen Polo R WRC

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KrisMeekesBetter - Unregistered

March 16, 2009 9:22 PM

Totally agree Sam. What amazing me is that the PR person puts out the same drivel about Wilson and Ford after every race. Successive points finishes, stage win, all true but come on give me something impressive, like Loebs stats! I understand you have to put a positive spin on things but nobody who reads believes a word of it!

Twin Cam Sam - Unregistered

March 16, 2009 7:59 PM

On the plus side, fair play to Matt. He kept his nose clean and got 5th place, and is now 6th in the championship, in front of Latvala so it looks like the consistent approach could be paying off after all. However, lets not forget that Ogier dropped 2 minutes after rolling on Saturday morning, and that at the finish, Matt was 6 minutes 41 seconds down on Loeb, nearly 5 minutes down on Solberg, 3rd in a 3 year old car, and over 4 minutes down on Sordo in 4th. No wonder he was 'well within his limits'!



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