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Rovanpera becomes youngest WRC race winner with Estonia Rally victory | Racing News


TARTU (Estonia): Kalle Rovanpera, a 20-year-old Finn, became the youngest winner of the World Rally Championship when he took the Rally Estonia on Sunday.
Rhythm of Rovanpera HyundaiCraig Breen for almost a minute and broke the record of another Finn, Jari-Matti Latvala, now his boss at Toyota, who was 22 when he earned his first victory in Sweden in 2008.
The former Skoda driver, who lives in Estonia, was joined by his father Harri, a rally winner, at the finish line.
“It has been a difficult season and it is very good to get it here in Estonia. It is almost a rally at home and many fans have been here supporting,” Rovanpera told the WRC website.
“It has been a long season so far with not so good results, but we showed that the rhythm is there and now we can take it home, which is good.”
Last year, Rovanpera was the youngest rider to make the podium when he finished third in Sweden.
He kept his lead overnight by finishing third, fourth or fifth in all of Sunday’s stages.
Belgian Thierry Neuville finished third for Hyundai, 1 minute and 12 seconds behind, after winning three stages of the day and finishing second in the other three.
Seven-time champion Sebastien Ogier finished fourth to extend his overall drivers’ championship lead to 37 points over his Toyota teammate, Welshman Elfyn Evans, who was fifth.
Hope at home and four-time race winner Ott Tanak won three stages on Sunday, including the closing power stage, but finished 22nd more than an hour and 20 minutes slower than Rovanpera after temporarily abandoning on Friday after of three punctures in his Hyundai.

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