Colin Clark’s 2023 Rally Italy Sardinia driver ratings

The scores are in from a dramatic sixth round of the 2023 WRC season

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Every single driver had a story to tell from last weekend’s Rally Italy Sardinia – that’s how breathless and, at times, chaotic it was.

Colin Clark faces the unenviable task of having to sit down and rate each Rally1 drivers’ performance from round six of this year’s World Rally Championship.

Intringuingly though, the scores are all closely matched this week!

Here are Colin’s scores:


Kalle Rovanperä 8/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: 3rd


Struggled a little with road cleaningon  Friday morning, and a herd of cows on the road, but bounced back with a win on the second pass of Monte Lerno in the afternoon.

Did exactly what he had to do to stay on the road and capitalize on others’ mistakes and misfortunes, and showed considerable rally nouse to manage his Yaris safely through the numerous water splashes that sucked in and spat out his unfortunate team-mates.

Once again a stunning powerstage performance from Rovanperä that, along with his third place finish, means he extends his lead in the championship to an almost comfortable 25 points.

Elfyn Evans 7/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: 4th


First rally back after such a brutally violent off as the one Elfyn experienced in Portugal was, on the face of it, going to be difficult.

But it turns out that Elfyn managed half a day of running in Finland in the build up to Sardinia, and there’s no doubt this helped tremendously.

Nothing spectacular in terms of pace in Sardinia, but that’s not what last week was about. He showed tremendous tenacity to nurse his damaged car back to service on day two and completed every kilometer to finish in a confidence-building fourth place.

Sébastien Ogier 5/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: 14th



Was absolutely the class of the field for the best part of a day and a half and then it all fell apart for the champ.

I wasn’t in the slightest bit surprised to see Ogier leading at Saturday lunchtime. In testing conditions his experience and consummate abilities come to the fore. And it’s precisely because of that experience and ability that I was enormously surprised to see the mistakes he made on Saturday afternoon.

The problem in the water splash was baffling – Ogler was fully aware of Katsuta and Evans’ earlier issues. He was the last driver I’d have expected to repeat the mistakes already made by his team-mates.

But that’s what he did and, ultimately, through a series of increasingly stressful and frantic events, this led to his off.

This was a very un-Ogier like week and one that he clearly didn’t enjoy.

Takamoto Katsuta 6/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: 40th


OK, so Taka missed most of Saturday when his Yaris succumbed to the forces on the opening stage’s water splash, but this was an enormously encouraging performance.

The pace was there, and at times it was stage-winning pace. But more importantly, he looked really comfortable in the GR Yaris Rally1 for maybe the first time.

He threw the car at some really treacherous sections and managed the bouncing, bucking rocket ship with a degree of control and confidence that we haven’t seen before.


Thierry Neuville 8/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: 1st


The result was exactly what Neuville needed after a couple of disappointing rounds in Croatia and Portugal – and the performance was very much a positive step in the right direction.

The pressure was on last week with Neuville’s championship challenge in danger of faltering, and once again on the Friday morning things didn’t look great. It is somewhat bewildering how often Fridays seem to be a struggle for Neuville.

But as is often the case, Neuville stepped things up and fought his way back into contention. The day Neuville comes out of the blocks firing on all cylinders will be a welcome one indeed. He doesn’t make things easy for himself doing things this way.

Benefitted from the pressure that his team-mate kept applying to Ogier in the lead and with team orders coming into play, the latter part of this rally was a fairly stress-free ride.

Seems as if Hyundai has made a step forward with the handling of the car here, and that can only be good news for Neuville’s title hopes.

Esapekka Lappi 9/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: 2nd


Another fantastic drive from Lappi and yet again, for much of the rally, he was by some margin the quickest of the Hyundais.

Lappi is building speed and consistency as the season progresses and is now driving at a level that makes him a challenger for the win on just about every event he starts. Knew as soon as he heard that Ogier was off the road that his chances of a win here were gone however, and he backed off accordingly.

Lappi is playing a massive part in Neuville and Hyundai’s title challenges this year and with three podiums in a row now, depending on who’s is behind him, that elusive second career win is surely not far off.

Dani Sordo 5/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: DNF


A bit of a messy weekend for Sordo who was lucky to get way with a big mistake and a roll on the first pass through Monte Lerno.

The team did a great job to get him back out and it looked like Sordo was on course to repay them with a hard fought fifth place finish, until yet more water splash induced issues stopped him at the roadside with two stages remaining.

Messy rallies are few and far between these days for Sordo, so with his two team-mates very much flying the Hyundai flag high, this was perhaps an opportune week for Sordo to have an off one.

M-Sport Ford

Ott Tänak 5/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: 35th


Sadly, another lackluster performance from Ott. By his own admission he didn’t really drive well last week, and the issue in the water on day two compounded what was already a fairly wretched rally.

The improvements in the car that Ott demands are unquestionably on their way, but will they come soon enough to keep Ott’s title challenge on track?

Well, that all depends on Ott’s ability to extract the maximum from the current, still very capable car.

And on the face of it, he’s struggling to do that.

Pierre- Loius Loubet 5/10

Rally Italy Sardinia result: DNF


Sitting in third place after four stages, this was shaping up to be the confidence-building, breakthrough event that young Loubet so desperately needs.

Sadly that wan’t to be, but as disappointing as last week ultimately was for Loubet, when he sits down and reflects on the kilometers he did complete, he’ll see there are positives to take away.