It was especially difficult in the morning because we didn’t expect it to be that slippery – the rain was a surprise to me at least.
But I think we managed to go through the stages quite well and we didn’t make any big mistakes.
That was the key today I think – to have a clean run and still being able to push as hard as possible.”
“With the next two days on Tarmac, I think Sébastien [Loeb] will be hard to beat! But really we are not looking to fight with him – for us this weekend is all about the fight with Jari-Matti [Latvala] and securing third position in the championship.”
Craig Breen, Ford Fiesta S2000 (6th) said: “I’m delighted! OK, it was bad luck for P-G [Andersson] but it suits us down to the ground.
We have a very good lead heading into the Tarmac stages now which should be a little less tricky than today so I am looking forward to that.
“The road was getting worse and worse and the second pass was just horrific. There were many times where you could have pushed on, but the chances of coming off the road were just too high.”
Maciej Oleksowicz, Ford Fiesta S2000 (17th) said: “This afternoon was really tough. The conditions were a lot like Portugal, but it is good that we are still here and I hope for a bit of sunshine tomorrow!
“It was a real fight just to stay on the road, but fortunately we managed to do that. The car is working well so all in all I am very satisfied with the way today has gone for us.”
Evgeny Novikov, Ford Fiesta RS WRC: Becoming lodged in a ditch on SS5, Novikov was forced to retire for the day. But with no damage to his Ford Fiesta RS WRC, the Russian will restart under Rally 2 regulations tomorrow.
Yazeed Al Rajhi, Ford Fiesta RRC: A problem with the turbo on his Ford Fiesta RCC forced Al Rahji to retire after SS5. With the issue due to be rectified in service, the Saudi Arabian will restart under Rally 2 regulations tomorrow.