David Evans: My advice to Teemu Suninen

A podium finish - or even a win - are within the Finn's grasp on his home round of the WRC this week

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Dear Teemu,

How are you? Ready? Good. I’ve been thinking about your week ahead.

You don’t need advice. You’re surrounded by it. But here are my thoughts for your Rally Finland.

Reach for the moon. Even if you miss, you’ll end up among the stars.

Reach for the win. Even if you miss, you’ll end up on the podium.

A couple of months ago, you and I chatted about that 2017 Rally Finland, the one where you finished fourth, but fought for second… on only your second-ever start in a World Rally Car.

That event was about seizing the moment and taking the opportunity. There was both poetry and purity in the way you talked of your approach. I’m thinking more of the same this week…


Estonia demonstrated what you can do with the Hyundai i20 N Rally1. I think Finland can and will offer even more.

Can you win? Quite possibly. Let’s see what the weather does and how the competition plays out, but I’d certainly be backing you for a top-three.

Crucial to all of the above is staying in the same mindset you enjoyed through Estonia. The speed came to you. Granted, the second pass was more complex as you found your feet in the ruts (and continued rain could soften the roads around Jyväskylä a bit this week), but you were still very much right there.

Of course, you’re going to listen intently to what Cyril the boss tells you and yes, you are in this one to help the team out. But there’s more than one way to do that. So often we talk of the third car being the safety net to capture any points if the two ahead fall or fail.


Here’s a different way of looking at it: where’s the biggest points differential? It’s the one between first and second place. Land yourself into P1 and you’ll likely make Mr Abiteboul’s life a touch more difficult if he looks to slow you down – unless Thierry Neuville’s running second at the time.

Does the ‘bird in the hand is worth two in the bush’ phrase translate to Finnish? Maybe. Maybe not. In essence it means having one prized possession in your hands is as valuable as the potential for two.

This is your moment. You have this one in your hand. Use it.

Relax your shoulders, trust your instinct, listen to Mikko and send it.