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Jordan - day 3: First win of year for Hirvonen.

"My strategy paid off but I was nervous in the final stage," he reflected. "No split times were available for Sordo and I didn't know how hard he was pushing.

"I really needed these 10 points and this is a great result for my championship challenge. I need to keep my feet on the ground however and continue trying to find more speed and more wins."

Sordo meanwhile wasn't too disheartened with the runners-up spot and he certainly gave his all on the final day to try and take 'gold', with an off in the final stage, which cost him 30 seconds, definite evidence of that.

"I was fully aware this morning that the cards weren't stacked in our favour, but I tried to put that to the back of my mind and push as hard as possible. I did all I could to recover the lead but it wasn't enough," he noted.

"Even so, I am pleased with our performance this weekend. We led on two occasions and I was delighted with my feeling at the wheel of the Citroën C4 WRC from start to finish. I'm sure the experience will come in useful on the forthcoming events."

Subaru's Chris Atkinson completes the rostrum, after another very solid performance. There were no heroics from the Aussie, but he settled into a steady and consistent pace and was justly rewarded with his third podium on the trot and his fourth of the season.

Granted he only got the spot after other people hit problems and granted he finished around 5 minutes off the top two, but still he had every right to be pleased and he was.

"We've still got a lot of work to do and we want to be more competitive on pace and pushing for wins, but four podiums from five rallies is a very consistent start for us so with that I'm happy," he noted.

Further down the order Stobart Ford duo Henning Solberg and Matthew Wilson came in fourth and fifth, with the latter losing out to his team-mate when he clipped a bridge parapet on the final stage this morning and punctured the rear left tyre. The Englishman had to stop and replace it, losing two minutes and fourth place.

"We were slightly disappointed this morning when the puncture cost us a lot of time but in the end we remained focused and now we have finished fifth which I am really happy with on this new and difficult event," said Matt.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) / Jarmo Lehtinen (FIN) BP Ford Abu Dhabi Focus RS WRC 07. Jordan Rally winners. April 24-27 2008. [PIC CREDIT: FORD / worldrallypics.com]
Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) / Jarmo Lehtinen (FIN) BP Ford Abu Dhabi Focus RS WRC 07. Jordan Rally winners. April 24-27 2008. [PIC CREDIT: FORD / worldrallypics.com]
Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) / Jarmo Lehtinen (FIN) BP Ford Abu Dhabi Focus RS WRC 07. Jordan Rally winners. April 24-27 2008. [PIC CREDIT: FORD / worldrallypics.com]
Vaclav Pech in his Mini John Cooper Works S2000 on day one of the Barum Czech Rally Zlin
Vaclav Pech in his Mini John Cooper Works S2000 on day two of the Barum Czech Rally Zlin
Isolde Holderied. Toyota GT86 CS-R3. Rallye Deutschland safety/zero car [Pic credit: Toyota]
Isolde Holderied. Toyota GT86 CS-R3. Rallye Deutschland safety/zero car [Pic credit: Toyota]
Isolde Holderied [Pic credit: Toyota]
Dani Sordo (ESP) Marc Marti (ES), Hyundai I20 WRC, Hyundai Motorsport
Pontus Tidemand (SWE) Emile Axelsson (SWE), Ford Fiesta R5
Pontus Tidemand (SWE) Emile Axelsson (SWE), Ford Fiesta R5, WRC2 winners
Podium
Podium
Podium
Podium
Podium
Thierry Neuville, Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC, #7 Hyundai Motorsport)
Thierry Neuville, Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC, #7 Hyundai Motorsport)

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