WRC Finland: Sanjay Takale placed 14th in WRC3 after Leg-1
Jyväskylä (Finland), July 26: Making his debut in the World Rally Championship, India’s Sanjay Takale finished in 14th spot in the WRC3 category at the conclusion of Leg-1 on Friday in the Neste Rally Finland after suffering a puncture and damage to the lower arm of the car.
Piloting a 2-Wheel Drive Ford Fiesta prepared by Baltic Motorsports Promotion team with Darren Garrod as the co-driver, Pune-based Takale took his time getting used to the conditions that were tailor-made for superfast pace.
Focussing on negotiating the rough terrain and bringing the car home in one piece, Takale drove conservatively at the outset, and was further weighed down by the puncture on SS-9 followed by the damage to the lower arm which cost him precious time.
Takale was much quicker on the second loop of the Stages as he came in 14th at the end of Leg-1 which comprised 11 Special Stages spread over 128.68 Kms.
Leg-2 on Saturday will prove to be an acid test for man and machine with eight more Special Stages to be run, covering a competitive distance of 142.86 Kms.
Rally Finland known as Neste Rally Finland and formerly called 1000 Lakes Rally and Rally of the Thousand Lakes; is a world rally round held in Jyvaskyla at the Finnish Lakeland. The stages are on wide and smooth gravel roads, featuring blind crests and big jumps. It is the fastest event in the WRC and has been nicknamed the "Grand Prix of Rallying" and the "Grand Prix on Gravel" , attracting hundreds of thousands of rally fans from around the world. The rally is known to be difficult for non-Nordic rally drivers; only six drivers from countries other than Finland or Sweden have won the rally finland in the 1980s and before, the field was made up almost entirely of Finnish and Swedish drivers.