Ott Tänak Retires From Secto Rally Finland

August 4, 2023Joe Moore

Just three stages into Secto Rally Finland a driver would retire from the event. That driver is 2022 winner Ott Tänak.

What Happened?

6.1km into the third stage of Secto Rally Finland Ott Tänak would switch into EV mode on his Ford Puma Rally1. Tänak would subsequently pull off the stage at the next access road, meaning he is done for at least today. The reason for Tänak’s retirement is due to his engine dying. He had a similar issue in Rally Estonia. Which was solved by M-Sport replacing Tänak’s engine. Ultimately costing the Estonian a 5-minute penalty at his home event.

A Disappointing End

Ott Tänak came into Secto Rally Finland looking for his fourth win in the last five years. Unfortunately for him that won’t be happening. Ott Tänak led the rally after SSS1 by 0.6 seconds over Thierry Neuville. Tänak would drop to a tie for second on SS2, 0.4 seconds slower than Kalle Rovanperä. Tänak was one of the favourites to take the win this weekend. Now it looks like Rovanperä’s main competition for the event win is gone once again.

What Ott Tänak’s Retirement Means

With Tänak out of contention for the rally win, and potentially the rally altogether it leaves a door open. A door to a podium position which was expected to be held by Tänak. It also robs us of a Tänak and Rovanperä battle once again. As we didn’t get it in Estonia due to a 5-minute penalty against Tänak, and now this. At this point, I truthfully don’t know if there’s a more unlucky driver in the WRC than Ott Tänak. Rally isn’t just about skill, it’s about luck as well. Any driver can tell you that you could have more skill than Rovanperä but without luck you’re not going to get far.