No real surprise in Spain with VW at the top of the leaderboard at the end of Rally Catalunya, or perhaps there was. It wasn't the Ogier machine or even the Latvala car though, Andreas Mikkelsen scored his first WRC victory. Latvala punctured a tyre on SS21 and Sebastian Ogier crashed out on the final stage, SS22.
As for the DS3 twins, there was just no catching Dani Sordo in the Hyundai but when Kris Meeke spun on SS19 he lost fourth place to team mate Mads Østberg! However, the Power Stage saw Kris score an extra point for the Drivers’ championship by grabbing third fastest time.
At the finish, Kris said: "It was a fairly strange weekend. With no experience on the gravel stages, I wasn’t really on the pace on Friday and we lost time on some of our rivals. On tarmac, with different tyres to last year, I didn’t have a very good feeling in the car. The result is still positive for the team. It‘s now up to us to finish the season on a high at the final rally in Wales.”
Mads Østberg: “We made a very good start on Friday. We were one of the quickest crews on gravel, despite our road position. Unfortunately a puncture on the longest stage meant we lost a lot of time. I think we were also very competitive on tarmac.”
Final Leaderboard:1. Andreas Mikkelsen / Ola Floene (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) 3:21:04.8
2. Jari-Matti Latvala / Miikka Anttila (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) +3.1
3. Dani Sordo / Marc Marti (Hyundai i20 WRC) +21.2
4. Mads Østberg / Jonas Andersson (DS 3 WRC) +1:06.3
5. Kris Meeke / Paul Nagle (DS 3 WRC) +1:08.2
6. Hayden Paddon / John Kennard (Hyundai i20 WRC) +1:23.3
7. Martin Prokop / Jan Tomanek (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) +4:14.2
8. Thierry Neuville / Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC) +8:01.9
9. Pontus Tidemand / Emil Axelsson (Skoda Fabia R5) +8:56.8
10. Jan Kopecky / Pavel Dresler (Skoda Fabia R5) +9:07.5