2016 Rallye Deutschland: Latvala and Mikkelsen share top spot in Shakedown

Volkswagen Motorsport drivers Jari-Matti Latvala and Andreas Mikkelsen shared the fastest times in Shakedown for Rallye Deutschland 2016.

Mikkelsen, who set his best time on the fourth pass on the 4.55 kilometre Konz test led Shakedown until Latvala on his fifth and final run, joined his Norwegian Volkswagen team-mate at the top of the timesheets with a 2:21.1.

Rallye Deutschland is the first asphalt rally since the January season-opener in Monte-Carlo. The Finn admitted it took a bit of getting used to the sealed-surface roads of Germany after six gravel rallies on the spin.

Latvala told WRC.com “After my pre-event test, I realised that maybe my car was too soft, I didn’t get the best feeling when we started this morning so we went stiffer with the settings to fine-tune the right balance. Everything felt good in the last run and that’s the set up I will start with.”

Hyundai’s Dani Sordo returned to Germany after missing Finland with a back injury. The Spaniard set a 2:21.8 to go third while Championship Leader Sébastien Ogier was fourth as the top four were all covered by just seven-tenths of a second in Shakedown.

Sordo’s team-mates Thierry Neuville and Hayden Paddon shared fifth place whilst Abu Dhabi World Rally Team’s Stéphane Lefebvre was the only Citroën in the top ten for Shakedown in seventh.

M-Sport’s Eric Camilli suffered an engine sensor problem in his Ford Fiesta RS WRC on his first run, but managed to complete the Konz test in eighth. Meanwhile, DMACK driver Ott Tänak and Camilli’s M-Sport team-mate Mads Østberg rounded out the top ten for Shakedown in ninth and tenth places respectively.

The 2016 ADAC Rallye Deutschland begins with the first stage at Mittelmosel 1 on Friday at 09:06am UK time, which is 10:06am local time in Germany.