WRC Wales Rally GB: Hirvonen and Lehtinen will be dearly missed – Wilson

Malcolm Wilson and co salute Mikko Hirvonen and Jarmo Lehtinen after their final outing in the World Rally Championship
M-Sport boss Malcolm Wilson has paid tribute to Mikko Hirvonen and co-driver Jarmo Lehtinen after their final WRC event.

Hirvonen and Lehtinen brought the curtain down on their careers in style last weekend, finishing second on Wales Rally GB in their M-Sport-run Fiesta RS WRC car.

“It is such a pleasure to see Mikko and Jarmo end their careers with such a positive result,” said Wilson. “It is hard to put into words, but I can certainly say that they have made a lasting impression on the team. They are liked by everyone and will be dearly missed.

“All of us were immensely proud to see him take such a result away from what has been a very special weekend.”

Sebastien Ogier and Volkswagen boss Jost Capito echoed those sentiments: “I want to thank Mikko and Jarmo,” Capito stated. “I was at Ford in 2006 and 2007 when we won the world [manufacturers'] titles and those were great seasons.

"I was also there when Mikko won his first event in Australia, that was really emotional and it is something I will never forget – I hope it is the same for those guys as well.

“I learned a lot from them and I hope they learned something from me too. It was a great time of my life, and I wish them all the best for the future. I am sure we are going to see them again.”

“I would also like to take the chance to say one goodbye to Mikko and Jarmo and to wish them to enjoy the rest of their lives as much as they have enjoyed the last 13 years [in the WRC] – I am sure we see you again soon!” Ogier added.

“I am [also] delighted for them that they ended their final WRC rally on the podium. They have had a great career, and we will miss driving against them.”
by Rob Wilkins

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Mikko Hirvonen (fin) with Malcolm Wilson Ceo of team ford
Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) Jarmo Lehtinen (FIN) Ford Focus RS WRC 07, Malcolm Wilson, Managing Director, M-Sport
Malcolm Wilson (GBR) and Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) / Jarmo Lehtinen (FIN), BP Ford Focus RS WRC 07. Rally Argentina, March 27-30th 2008.
Mikko Hirvonen (fin) and Malcolm Wilson BP Ford Focus Wrc. Rallye Automobile Monte-Carlo, 18-20 January 2007
Mikko Hirvonen and Malcolm Wilson [Pic credit: Ford/worldrallypics.com]
WRC Rally of Turkey, Kremer, 12-15th October 2006. Ford celebrate a 1-2 finish with drivers Marcus Gronholm and Mikko Hirvonen and team boss, Malcolm Wilson.
Rally Australia winner, Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) celebrates with BP Ford team boss, Malcolm Wilson. Rally Australia 2006, Perth 26-29 October 2006 [Pic credit: BP Ford / worldrallypics.com]

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November 17, 2014 4:22 PM

Yeah for sure Mikko will be really missed 3rd in Spain and 2nd on GB says that he was happy on the last 2 events Maybe he has been struggling with his decision all season and he made his mind up more recently and this is why he has had 2 Cracking consecutive results, this is the Mikko we knew was always in there somewhere At least he retires knowing he still had the old speed. He has had a Brilliant Career, one of few guys able to fight with and Beat Loeb at Full Chat 14 WRC wins is a very good CV when you consider Loeb was winning WORLD TITLES back to back with every win that Mikko achieved, poor Sordo wasn't so Lucky Oh well, at least he can sit his Grand kids on his knee one day and proudly tell them that if it wasn't for a certain Ford Focus Bonnet coming up on the last day of Rally GB in 2009 he would be a World Rally Champion Grandad who beat the Worlds best ever Rally Driver who was in his prime at the time

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