Teased Esapekka Lappi, hopeful of continuation in the WC series – stable manager Jari-Matti Latvala: "He has done exactly what we wanted"

The season is over for Esapekka Lappi in the WC series. Rally legend Sebastien Ogier will take over Toyota’s third car in the three remaining races. Stable manager Jari-Matti Latvala hopes for a new contract for Lappi.

Seven competitions, three podium positions and 58 points were Esapekka Lappi’s balance in this year’s edition of the World Rally Championship.

Lappi and eight-time world champion Sebastien Ogier have shared responsibility in Toyota’s third car this year. On Monday, the stable announced that Ogier, who has run three races so far, will also run the three races remaining for the season.

So far, Lappi does not yet have a contract for the following season.

– I think that in the last few races I have done my best to keep the place. We were hired to collect points for the team. I have done that, and thus I think there can be a continuation, Esapekka Lappi said a little over a week ago in connection with the rally in Greece to the series’ website.

Esapekka Lappi in the WC series 2022

Sweden – third
Croatia – 49th
Italy – 44th (4th on Power Stage)
Estonia – sixth (fourth on Power Stage)
Finland – third
Belgium – third
Greece – 22nd (5th on Power Stage)

Latvala flags continuation for the tandem

Toyota team manager Jari-Matti Latvala heaps praise on Lappi, who throughout the season had top-class speed in the races. Also from the perspective of team spirit, Lappi has been an important cog for Toyota, which has a grip on the WC titles both among the drivers and the stable.

– Esapekka has done exactly the job we asked of him. Personally, I would choose him as a driver for next season. I think we can continue to share our third car between Ogier and Lappi, said Jari-Matti Latvala Yle Sports.

Jari-Matti Latvala during the Jyväskylär rally 2022.
Stable manager Jari-Matti Latvala is satisfied with Esapekka Lappi’s performances during the season.

Image: Mikael Oivo / Yle

According to Latvala, Ogier has signaled an interest in continuing to run single races next year as well.

– He definitely has an appetite for the rally, even though he doesn’t want to drive for a whole season.

This year’s WC series continues in New Zealand next week and there Toyota’s Kalle Rovanperä has his next chance to secure the WC title. The last races of the season are run in Spain in October and in Japan in November.

Yle broadcasts from the WC rally series.

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