5 August 2009
Ketomaa: I wanted to do better
Jari Ketomaa broke his duck on the Neste Oil Rally Finland last weekend, the ninth round in the 2009 World Rally Championship, when he finished in seventh and notched up his first points at the 'senior' level.
Ketomaa, who was third overall in the 2008 Production Car World Rally Championship, was competing in a privately entered 2007 spec Subaru Impreza WRC. Despite that though, he was soon mixing it with those in more modern machinery and was eighth following the first loop on day one.
Although he briefly slipped down to ninth in SS6, he was back up and into the points in the next test, ending the opening leg just 1.9 seconds off Mads Ostberg in P7.
He continued in the same way on Saturday too, and while he lost over a minute in the first stage, Leustu 1, when he went off the road and hit a tree, he recovered again. Indeed in SS12 he was back to eighth, gaining a place when Henning Solberg had suspension problems and also 'passing' Matthew Wilson in the same stage.
In the end he finished day two in seventh, a position he held all the way to the finish in Jyväskylä.
In total Ketomaa set eleven top-six stage times and given it was achieved in a 2007 spec car and on his first outing in the World Rally Championship in a World Rally Car, it was more than respectable.
Despite all that though, he wasn't completely satisfied with his weekend and the result on what was his sixth outing on the 1000 Lakes.
"I wanted a better result definitely," Ketomaa reflected, "Our times could have been better too - but I am still very happy to have been near the top five.
"We were in a 2007 specification car and that put us at a disadvantage. Also we have only had 100 kilometres testing in this car."
Mike Stenberg, Ketomaa's co-driver, meanwhile concurred that the overall result could have been a better.
"When we had good stages with no problems we were happy with our times. But with the engine problems and puncture our overall result was not so good. We could have been fifth overall if we didn't have those problems," Stenberg summed-up.
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