Hyundai took victory in Rally de Portugal, the sixth round of the 2018 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC). Thierry Neuville and co-driver Nicolas Gilsoul won by a margin of 40 seconds over M-Sport Ford’s Elfyn Evans.
In a rally of attrition, with many competitors experiencing issues, Neuville’s level-headed and measured performance earned him an eighth WRC career win and his second of the year so far. It is the ninth in total for Hyundai Motorsport as the team retains the lead of the manufacturers’ championship.
“What a weekend and what a result!”, Neuville exclaimed. “We have taken a clever approach to this event, pushing when we could and controlling the pace when we needed. The car has been fabulous all weekend long, and the team has been behind us every stage of the way. I have felt completely comfortable and at ease despite some challenging conditions. My teammates have also been on the pace but were unlucky not to be on the podium. We tried to give it a bit of a push in the Power Stage, to take as many points as we could, but also taking care not to make any mistakes. We have a lot of Portuguese people in the team, so it’s going to be a nice celebration. A fantastic weekend for our team.”
— Thierry Neuville (@thierryneuville) May 20, 2018
The car was fabulous all weekend, Neuville says after his Portugal win
Team Principal Michel Nandan commented that it was a very competitive weekend for the team.
“Thierry and Nicolas, in particular, have put in a classy performance on all days. They have had a clean drive with an excellent pace that has allowed them to control things from beginning to end. They kept their calm and knew just how much they could give on the Power Stage. Dani [Sordo] and Carlos [del Barrio] deserve to be commended on a strong weekend and on maintaining a good rhythm throughout the event. Andreas [Mikkelsen] and Anders [Jæger], too, battled on from their Friday issues and we did all we could to help them to the end of the rally. In the circumstances, they put in an impressive run in the Power Stage and only just missed out on an extra point. We continue to lead the championship, which remains very close, and Thierry moves to the top of the drivers’ table. Sardinia will be a very difficult event, but we will be ready”, Nandan added.
— Hyundai Motorsport (@HMSGOfficial) May 20, 2018