More points for Suzuki...
Toni Gardemeister and co-driver Tomi Tuominen drove an inch-perfect final day at Rally Finland to bring their Suzuki SX4 WRC home in eighth place. Gardemeister's drive is rewarded with a drivers' championship point for him, and two for the Suzuki
World Rally Team.
Teammate P-G Andersson did not restart Sunday morning following an incident the day before during the afternoon, when the car went off the road and into a tree.
Gardemeister's Suzuki SX4 WRC ran without any faults through the final day. The Finn had dialled himself into the three super-quick final leg stages and was delighted with the handling and suspension of the car.
"It's been a really good day today; a day I've really enjoyed," said Gardemeister. "The stages are nice, the sun was shining and, of course, there were plenty of Finnish flags flying!"
"It looked as though we could be having a big fight with Matthew (Wilson) today, but we managed to keep him behind. Once I realised that we had the speed to stay ahead of him, it was okay. I could relax and enjoy the roads," he reported.
"To end the event in Ruuhimaki, with those jumps at the end of the stage, is fantastic.
That's why people love Rally Finland," added Gardemeister. "I came here feeling we could make points and we have done that. It's been a good week."
Paul Wilding, Suzuki World Rally Team Manager:
"Toni has driven very well today. He's made no mistakes and the car hasn't missed a beat. We're very pleased with the performance and reliability we've found from the latest development of the Suzuki SX4 WRC. Taking points is why we're here, so we're delighted with that. Of course, it's a shame that P-G went off the road yesterday, but these things happen in this sport - particularly on such a high-speed event as Finland. Now, though, our focus switches to Rallye Deutschland and the new challenge of a pure asphalt rally. One thing is sure, though, we go there on a high after a points-finish in Finland."