Jari-Matti Latvala battled back from disappointment on the final day of Rally Japan to secure another podium finish in the latest round of the World Rally Championship season.

The Ford driver has been in the mix for victory when he moved to the head of the field on the second day before a damaged driveshaft saw him slide back to fifth place.

However, the Finn fought back on the final day to secure a third place finish, which he admitted had come as a surprise.

"It's been a strange weekend," he said. "On Friday I was a little off the pace initially but yesterday I climbed back to lead. Then I dropped back and I thought my chances of a good result had gone, but now I'm on the podium. After all that I have to be happy to finish third, even if I'm surprised.

"I took third place by winning the second pass through the long stage. I had a great rhythm and everything flowed perfectly. It was difficult to get back into the rhythm of driving on gravel having driven an asphalt rally since my win in Finland, but once I overcame that on Friday then I had good speed here."


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