Ott Tanak was fastest in Rally Great Britain shakedown. The Estonian driver’s fastest time was posted at his first attempt in the 3.32 km test. Citroen drivers Kris Meeke and Craig Breen were second and third – 0.9 and 1 sec slower respectively.
“Everything was working well and I’m very happy with the tyres and the car. I’m quite enjoying it at the moment. I like the gravel and the mud makes it a bit more tricky. But I’ve always enjoyed the challenge of the stages in Wales”, Tanak said for wrc.com.
The conditions on the shakedown stage were damp and greasy
But Ott thought the race would be exciting if the stage conditions continue to improve and the track dries. Still he was cautious with predictions: “It will be interesting to see what we can do here. I’m waiting to see what the feeling is like on Friday before I see what’s possible.”
The Wales event initially was not in Citroen’s program but the cancellation of Rally China meant Meeke could take part in one of his favorite races.
“In the 1980s, I remember my first experience of rallying on television, watching the Group B cars tackling the stages of the RAC rally. This was also the first World Championship rally that I saw in person, in 1996, I think it was. At the time, I was spellbound as Colin McRae and Richard Burns sped by. It didn’t matter that you were standing in the darkness and the rain, with your feet in the mud! Then I competed in my very first rally on the Welsh stages and it was also here that I made my WRC debut in 2002. It’s the event that I know the best and I feel at home here”, Meeke said.
Sebastien Ogier was fourth fastest, followed by Hayden Paddon (Hyundai) and his Volkswagen teammates Andreas Mikkelsen and Jari-Matti Latvala. Valeriy Gorbam (Mini John Cooper) was eighth while Hyundai drivers Dani Sordo and Thierry Neuville rounded off the top 10.