AutonetMagz – After absent for more than 18 years from WRC, Toyota finally returns. The latest proof is the win achieved by Jari-Matti Latvala and co-driver Miikka Anttila on the 65th Sweden Rally, which make it as the first Toyota wins after Didier Auriol won the 3rd China Rally back on 1999.
In the SS 1-4, Latvala shows his skill and setting the fastest time of 34:19.2 in front of Thierry Neuville and Nicolas Gilsoul in their Hyundai i20 WRC with 4 seconds of time difference.
But the SS 5-8 did bring a lot of surprise in this snowy event, such as during Kris Meeke driven his Citroën C3 WRC outside the track and hit a pile of snow, and Juho Hänninen as Latvala team mate who experience a blown radiator due to hitting a tree in a corner, and Mads Østberg who lose his rear spoiler of his Ford Fiesta WRC, and Neuville who leave behind Latvala up to 28.1 seconds at the SS8, and leads up to SS14.
But at the Super Special Stage (SSS) 15, Neuville hit his left front wheel to the curb, and destroys his i20 WRC Steering-column and make them out of the race.
Automatically, a huge relieve for LAtvala as his biggest rival has out of the race, plus Sébastien Ogier did some mistakes and causing his car to spun in the first orner of the stage, which make Latvala finished first at the Power Stage SS18 and got additional 5 points at the standings passing Ogier who wins the first series of WRC 2017 at 85thRallye Automobile Monte-Carlo.
This make Latvala sits at the top of standings, beating the 3 times WRC champion, Ogier at the second place, with only 4 points of difference. At the third position, Ott Tanak with 33 point, as the standings currently dominated by Ford and Hyundai manufacturer.