Was this Rovanperä’s best ever day in the WRC?

The world champion was at his very best on Saturday's leg of Rally of Portugal

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Was this Kalle Rovanperä’s best ever day in the World Rally Championship?

You could certainly make a strong case for it based on that opening run through Vieira do Minho alone, where he cleaned everyone to the tune of 12.8 seconds in 16.5 miles.

It was the sort of performance that brought back memories of Rovanperä at his dominant, opponent-destroying best in 2022.

A time when Rovanperä could do no wrong.

That swagger is back at this weekend’s Rally of Portugal.

But we digress, back to the question. With five stage wins from seven, and a lead that’s now 46.7s bigger than this time yesterday, surely it has to be.

Apparently not.


“I don’t think so,” Rovanperä told DirtFish.

But it was a very, very good day.

“It was a very good day, definitely,” the world champion agreed. “But I wouldn’t say the best day.”

What was then?

“I don’t know, I don’t know. I haven’t chosen.”

That means it’s probably yet to come.


Either way, Rovanperä has been in his element this weekend.

Apart from the event’s second stage where he felt he had way too much understeer that was killing his tires, Rovanperä has been at ease with everything.

His performance on Friday – to lead despite starting second on the road – was sublime, but also key to setting up his sensational Saturday.

While there have been setup woes and small imperfections on other rounds this year, in Portugal Rovanperä has been back in his happy place.

Winning stages, and most likely winning rallies.

Toyota Portugal

“Yeah, definitely,” he said when it was pointed out that he seems to have found some more consistency with the car this weekend.

“There’s been much more consistency. We have been struggling when opening the road in a few rallies before, definitely not being, let’s say, fast enough and then dropping back and struggling the whole rest of the weekend.

“So now we did the job right from the start. That was the plan.”

And, so far, he’s executed that plan to perfection.