Dani Sordo had hoped that his loose gravel surface experience would be an advantage in the 2013 Neste Oil Rally Finland, but despite securing a fifth place finish at the end of the rally of a thousand lakes the Spaniard admitted that he was disappointed with how the three days had gone.

"My finishing position could be regarded as satisfactory, but I can't be happy after a race like that," he said. "I never felt confident and the pace wasn't really there. It was a weekend that I'd rather forget about, to be honest.

"I'm not happy with myself. My position here is okay, but I'm really disappointed with me, with everything," he added, disconsolately.

Sordo's final position was arguably artificially boosted by the late retirements of Jarkko Nikara (with a broken right-hand front damper on his John Cooper Works MINI at the end of SS21) and Kris Meeke (who crashed his Citroen in the final run of the day through Ouninpohja.

If not for those two exits then Sordo would have finished in the somewhat less impressive seventh position, rather than just one spot back from his team mate Mikko Hirvonen who had suffered the worst of the weather on Thursday afternoon after having topped qualifying the day before.

"Not having any of our cars on the podium is frustrating for the whole team, especially given the level of performance shown by Mikko at the start of the rally," admitted Yves Matton, the team principal of Citroen Racing.

Sordo's problems started early in the rally, the team revealed

"I think in the beginning Sordo had problems with his pacenotes and I think now he is a little down," Matton explained.

"I don't know what is going on. Is it my notes? What is for sure is that it's not okay," Sordo had mused. "I am not in the mood even though I still try to push. I lack confidence especially when the car slides a lot. We will try to find a solution."

In the end Sordo came home over six minutes off the time of rally winner Sebastien Ogier, and over five and a half minutes slower than his own team mate Hirvonen.

Certainly not where he wanted to be this weekend, although the fact that he brought the car home without serious incident is a major plus given that Finland is a rally notorious for taking its toll on the unsuspecting and unwary.

Comments

Join the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register to add your comment