Wilson: Tanak’s confidence flying high
"We never doubted the performance"
M-Sport boss Malcolm Wilson is predicting more podium finishes for Ott Tänak this season after the Estonian’s third place finish at 72nd LOTOS Rally Poland pushed his confidence sky high.
Tänak was the only driver able to challenge the Volkswagens in Poland and he led for four stages and set six fastest times.
The result matched his best WRC finish so far, which he claimed at the 2012 Rally Italia Sardegna, but Wilson believes his Poland drive meant more.
"He’s probably the most relaxed I’ve seen him - and you can imagine what this has done for his confidence," Wilson told wrc.com. "He’s never really been in this position before. Okay, he had a podium before, but on that occasion there were a lot of retirements. Now he’s got a great feeling inside him, he’s relaxed and I think excited to know that he can go into the second half of the year and start to challenge the other guys. He says he’s been driving quickly but he feels there is more to come."
Poland was Tänak’s third rally in M-Sport’s new 2015-spec Fiesta RS, which was introduced at Vodafone Rallye de Portugal.
"It was great to see the combination of the car and Tänak working so well. I’m confident after what we saw in Poland that we’ll be challenging for more podiums later in the season," said Wilson. "We never doubted the performance, because we could see what we were achieving back at the factory. The feeling among the team to know that we’re competitive again is great."
After a mixed start to the season, Wilson believes Tänak is at the top of his game and is hoping for a good result in Finland. "As a driver, when you and the car are one - as they appear to be at the moment - that’s when you get the results," he said. "My instructions for Finland will be exactly the same: to do his own rally and to try and challenge the Volkswagens."
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