Volkswagen's Jari-Matti Latvala suffered more disappointed last weekend on Rally de Portugal, although he insists he “has to be happy with sixth after the way the event panned out”.
Latvala wasn't comfortable with the set-up of his Polo R WRC on Friday morning, although he was still fourth at the end of the loop, and was quickest in SS4, the 18.70 km Viana Do Castelo test.
However, the repeats did not go to plan when he hit a hole in SS5 and broke the power steering. He lost more than three minutes as a result, wrestling his car back to service and dropping to ninth overall, and while he did re-gain three positions on Saturday morning, P6 was a long way short of his pre-event target of repeating his victory from 2015.
“Coming into the rally we obviously had completely different ambitions. However, after the way it panned out, we have to be happy with sixth place,” Latvala insisted.
“We were able to contribute some valuable points towards the Manufacturers' Championship, and second place on the Power Stage was also a nice way to finish. I must say a big thank you to my team and the fans out on the route, who supported us magnificently. I will certainly look forward to returning next year.
“Now our focus switches to the next task in hand, in Sardinia.”
Writing on his official Facebook page on Friday, however, Latvala was clearly frustrated with his recent misfortunes.
“If I tell you that it was a very tough day, it was literally the case! Morning was okay but we were struggling to find the right feeling considering the conditions. We won the last stage of the loop, ready for more in the afternoon.
“But... We had a power steering issue in SS5 and it's been a hard work to drive after that! The ruts were so hard on my hands! I was exhausted. We've lost lot of time.
"Some point I've started to question myself... Have I done something really wrong to be chased by the bad luck like that?”