Jari-Matti Latvala insisted that he has to remain realistic about his performance on Rally Germany, despite securing his best ever result on tarmac over the course of the weekend.

The Finn produced a solid performance to emerge from the event with second place behind Sebastien Loeb, giving him his best finish on an asphalt rally and a second consecutive podium finish after his third in Finland.

Despite coming through the tricky event unscathed however, Latvala was a full two minutes behind winner Sebastien Loeb, and the Ford man admitted that there was still plenty of work to be done.

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"It feels great to finish on the podium on asphalt and I'll take great confidence from my best result on this surface," he said. "This rally hasn't been kind to Ford over the years so it's a boost for everyone in the team. It was a hard event but we showed that the pace of myself and the car on asphalt continues to improve.

"The distance between ourselves and the winner was two minutes so we need to remain realistic and understand that there is still work to do. But I feel sure that we will be able to challenge for victory again on the remaining two asphalt rounds."

Petter Solberg was only able to finish in eleventh in the sister car having been forced to retire from day two, but team boss Malcolm Wilson said he was encouraged by the performance of his drivers.

"We were disappointed with our performance on the last round in Finland, so to come to an asphalt rally, where we've traditionally struggled, and be so competitive is pleasing," he said. "I was disappointed Petter went off but encouraged by the pace of both drivers, and I'm confident for the future on asphalt."