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Mixed emotions for Solberg, Wilson

Henning Solberg has consolidated his fourth position in the World Rally Championship standings after a battling run to fifth place on the Rally Portugal.

The Norwegian driver found himself having to launch a fight back at the end of day one when persistent brake problems left him well down the order in ninth position.

However, a combination of consistent stage times and a high attrition rate for those ahead allowed him to move into contention before eventually grabbing fifth place on the penultimate stage.

Now tied on points in fourth position with his brother Petter, Solberg was happy to stay out of trouble and complete a decent result for both himself and the Stobart team.

“I'm very pleased with this result, it give us more important points for the drivers' championship and also for the Stobart team. This rally wasn't easy as the stages are very tricky with differing sections and it's so hard to get a nice flow and rhythm in some of the stages.

“We tried to battle with him this morning but it was over before it had even begun. Our screen misted up badly and we had to stop for a while to let it clear; but the dust was also a lot worse on the last day, very patchy and inconsistent.

“Generally it was a good rally and we had a fantastic road position during the second day. We really used this to our advantage and put in some competitive times.”

Fifth position did, however, come at the expense of Stobart team-mate Matthew Wilson, who was on course for a second consecutive top five finish when he slid off the road on SS17, rolled and then burnt out the clutch attempting to get going again.

Having consistently traded stage times with his more experienced team-mate, Wilson was desperately disappointed to see a good result go wanting just a few miles from the end of the rally.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Henning Solberg (NOR) Cato Menkerud (NOR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Henning Solberg (NOR) Cato Menkerud (NOR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Henning Solberg (NOR) Cato Menkerud (NOR), Ford Focus RS WRC 08, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Henning Solberg (NOR) Cato Menkerud (NOR), 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]
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Podium - Volkswagen
Podium - Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) Anders Jaeger Synnevag (NOR) Volkswagen Polo R WRC
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Podium - Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) Anders Jaeger Synnevag (NOR) Volkswagen Polo R WRC

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Twin Cam Sam - Unregistered

April 06, 2009 6:47 PM

Matt, you might think your times and consistancy have improved, but, they need to improve one hell of a lot more. Bl**dy hell ! You had a small roll on a slow speed corner, how on earth can this 'be a big setback to your confidence' ? It was hardly a roll of Latvala proportions, was it lad ! I'd like to see you rolling out of every rally, providing you were showing some decent pace beforehand. Get over it. Dig deep, and find the speed you need to challenge for the top. If you can't, move over hand let someone else have a shot.



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