Toni Gardemeister marked the one year anniversary of the debut of the Suzuki SX4 WRC car in the World Rally Championship by picking up the final manufacturers' point in Corsica at the weekend.

Gardemeister, who eventually finished 13th overall, had been on course to claim a place in the top eight until a minor fuel pressure problem in the penultimate stage on day two cost him more than four minutes and dropped him back.

In the end though, it was still a good result, especially as he was suffering from a flu-like illness, which left his legs feeling like 'spaghetti' on Friday.

"We've scored a manufacturers' point for Suzuki. We had a few problems yesterday that deprived us of a place in the top eight. But we know what to work on now when it comes to asphalt," said the Finn.

"I started the rally feeling really ill but it gradually got better over the next couple of days, which was a big relief as on Friday afternoon it felt nearly impossible for me to drive.

"On the whole the car was good and we made a lot of improvements over the course of the rally. Today's stages were nice and I really enjoyed myself. For us though it was mostly just a question of driving safely to the finish today and making sure of the point. Now we get back to gravel in Japan, which I am looking forward to a lot!"

Gardemeister's team-mate Per-Gunnar Andersson meanwhile re-started on Sunday under the SupeRally, after going off in SS11. He eventually finished 17th overall in the sister SX4 WRC.

"The biggest problem I've had on this rally is with my confidence. I went off the road on the last rally in Spain and unfortunately the same thing happened again here," added the Swede.

"On the last day I really wanted to make sure that I had a safe run to the finish with no further setbacks. Luckily the car felt very nice and I had a good feeling with it by the end.

"I tried some softer suspension settings as well, which gave us some interesting results. We're learning new things all the time, so I think we can head to the last two rallies with confidence."



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