“Also in the Power Stage, I thought I drove well, but still Loeb was quicker. Speed is not a problem against Sebastien, but when things get really close, he seems to be able to analyze the situation and push hard without mistakes. He is very clever - and I have to improve on that.”
Behind, Mads Ostberg took another good result with fourth and as he will sit out the next round in New Zealand he was pleased to score good points: “It was very tough, of course, but our strategy paid off. The rally was rougher this year, but it worked better for us. I am quite happy because we showed we had a great strategy,” said the Adapta WRT man.
Martin Prokop was next up and completed the top five, while Thierry Neuville was sixth for the Citroen Junior WRT.
“It was a good weekend and important for our experience. The rhythm was strange but it's okay. We completed the rally. I hope in New Zealand we can push a little bit more. I want to learn. I want to be a world champion one day and we are working on it,” remarked the Frenchman after SS22.
Further back, Sebastien Ogier was seventh in his VW Motorsport-run Skoda Fabia S2000, with Ford Regional Rally Car runner Yazeed Al-Rajhi a good eighth. Ott Tanak took advantage of the Rally 2 regulations to re-start after his off on Friday to claim ninth place and two championship points, while Abdulaziz Alkuwari took the final WRC point in his Seashore Qatar WRT MINI John Cooper Works WRC car, ahead of Armindo Araujo, Spyros Pavildes, Yuriy Protasov and Valeriy Gorban in positions 11 through to 14, the latter winning the PWRC class.
Gorban had trailed Nicolas Fuchs by over 4 minutes at the end of day two, but the Peruvian was forced out on the final loop today, retiring in SS21 with suspension damage. Gorban thus inherited the PWRC class win, finishing over 3 minutes up on Subhan Aksa. Ricardo Trivino was third.
In the other support category, the WRC Academy, Elfyn Evans took his maiden win, 2 minutes 15.9 seconds up on Alastair Fisher.
As for retirements, in addition to Solberg, the Acropolis also claimed the scalps of a number of other runners, most noticeably Evgeny Novikov, Nasser Al-Attiyah and Andreas Mikkelsen. All three rejoined this morning under Rally 2, but none of them made it passed SS18. Al-Attiyah rolled, while Mikkelsen broke a wheel and Novikov was forced to stop due to mechanical gremlins.
The WRC now heads to New Zealand next, with that event running from June 22-24.
To view the result for the 2012 Acropolis Rally of Greece - CLICK HERE