Ott Tänak leads the way at the ADAC Rallye Deutschland 2019

Ott Tänak leads the way at the ADAC Rallye Deutschland 2019

23.08.2019: • World championship leader wins opening stage, St. Wendeler Land • German round of world championship opens with official ce

•    World championship leader wins opening stage, St. Wendeler Land

•    German round of world championship opens with official ceremony in service park at Bostalsee

The ADAC Rallye Deutschland is up and running. With glorious weather and perfect rally conditions, fans in the Saarland region of Germany created a great atmosphere on what proved to be an exciting day one of the German round of the FIA World Rally Championship.

The sporting highlight was the evening's opening special stage, St. Wendeler Land. The stars of the WRC were pulling no punches on the 5.20-kilometre route, as they looked to open their account with a fast time.

Ott Tänak (EST), at the wheel of a Toyota Yaris WRC, went fastest with a time of 2:39.4 minutes - a clear statement of intent from the world championship leader, who, despite the short distance covered, put an impressive 0.8 seconds between himself and his closest rivals.

The fact that he lost both wing mirrors on the stage was an indication of just how hard Tänak was pushing, as he looks to repeat his victories in Germany in 2017 and 2018. Hot on his heels are another three men who know what it takes to win in Germany: Dani Sordo (ESP) in the Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC, world champion Sébastien Ogier (FRA) in the Citroën C3 WRC, and Sordo's team-mate Thierry Neuville (BEL). A mere 0.2 seconds separated Tänak's three closest rivals at the finish.

Ahead of the special stage, the service park at the Bostalsee lake took centre stage, as it hosted the official opening ceremony of the ADAC Rallye Deutschland for the first time. A spectacular Red Bull Trial Show and an autograph session with the stars of the WRC added to the great atmosphere among the many visitors, crew members and volunteers, who were welcomed by Klaus Bouillon (The Saarland Minister of the Interior, Building and Sport) and Hermann Tomczyk (ADAC Sports President).

Once the competitors had been introduced, they immediately set off to the start of the St. Wendeler Land stage, which had also served as the route for the morning's shakedown. Sébastien Ogier set the fastest time (2:39.7 minutes) on the mandatory warm-up, closely followed by Ott Tänak (2:39.8 minutes). Esapekka Lappi (FIN) and Thierry Neuville clocked identical times (2:40.0 minutes) in third place.

Standings after 1 of 19 special stages:

1.          Tänak/Järveoja (EST/EST)          Toyota Yaris WRC          2:39.4 minutes
2.          Sordo/Del Barrio (ESP/ESP)          Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC          + 0.8 sec
3.          Ogier/Ingrassia (FRA/FRA)          Citroën C3 WRC          + 0.9 sec
4.          Neuville/Gilsoul (BEL/BEL)          Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC          + 1.0 sec
5.          Meeke/Marshall (GBR/GBR)          Toyota Yaris WRC          + 1.4 sec
6.          Latvala/Anttila (FIN/FIN)          Toyota Yaris WRC          + 1.6 sec
7.          Suninen/Lehtinen (FIN/FIN)          Ford Fiesta WRC          + 1.9 sec
8.          Lappi/Ferm (FIN/FIN)          Citroën C3 WRC          + 1.9 sec
9.          Mikkelsen/Jæger (NOR/NOR)          Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC          + 2.5 sec
10.          Greensmith/Edmondson (GBR/GBR)          Ford Fiesta WRC          + 3.0 sec

Tickets still available on-site

Those who did not make the pre-sale, still do not have to miss out on the ADAC Rallye Deutschland. Last-minute spectators can buy their passes at the ADAC local offices in St Wendel, Saarbrücken, Neunkirchen and Saarlouis as well as at the Service Park at Bostalsee. EUR20 Special Stage passes grant access to the respective Special Stage (SS).

The Arena Panzerplatte SS on the Baumholder military range is an exception: the pass costs EUR25 because rally spectators are offered a much more extensive programme. Admission to the Service Park at Bostalsee is free on all rally days. All information on where to buy a pass or redeem a self-print pass can be found at (go to the tabs Tickets at the event or Ticket exchange points).

ADAC Rallye Deutschland information
: The ADAC Rallye Deutschland has a unique worldwide reputation. Its mix of hairpin stages in the vineyards, tough tracks on the Baumholder tank range and fast asphalt roads presents extreme challenges for both the teams and the drivers. Excellent driving skills and versatility are of the essence here. Diversity, high-class action and closeness to the fans are the ingredients that make the ADAC Rallye Deutschland such an attractive package for spectators as well. Year after year, this major event draws enthusiastic crowds from all over Europe, giving it a special, international atmosphere.

Peter Linke,


23.08.2019 / MaP

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