Debut joy for Ford as new Focus rally car flies to Finnish win
BP–Ford World Rally Team

Rally Finland

Round 9 Fia World Rally Championship

2 – 5 August 2007

BP–Ford’s new Focus RS World Rally Car claimed a stunning one–two debut finish on the FIA World Rally Championship’s fastest rally in Finland today. Marcus Grönholm and Timo Rautiainen won Rally Finland by 24.2sec from team–mates Mikko Hirvonen and Jarmo Lehtinen after three days of flat–out competition.

The victory extended BP–Ford’s lead in the manufacturers’ championship to 40 points with seven of the 16 rounds remaining.

Grönholm’s win, his 29th career success, was his seventh Rally Finland triumph in eight seasons. He becomes the first driver in the sport’s history to win a full WRC event on seven occasions and extended his lead in the drivers’ standings to 13 points.

Hundreds of thousands of Finnish fans flocked into the forests to cheer on BP–Ford’s Flying Finns who won 20 of the 23 speed tests.

The rally also marked the BP–Ford debut of Team Abu Dhabi drivers Khalid Al Qassimi and Nicky Beech who finished 16th in another Focus RS. Abu Dhabi Tourism Authority’s Ahmed Hussein was present to witness the emirate’s first step into the WRC since concluding a major partnership with BP–Ford during the summer.

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