WRC - Ostberg welcomes Monte's fifth place

Qatar M-Sport team leader Mads Ostberg says his fifth position on the Monte Carlo Rally was as much as he could have expected on his debut as the team's new leader.

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WRC - Ostberg welcomes Monte's fifth place
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Qatar M-Sport leader Mads Ostberg

Ostberg's Monte debut drew praise from his team principal Malcolm Wilson, especially with the 24-year-old Fiesta RS WRC driver scoring a fastest time on the event as well.

The Norwegian said: "Considering the conditions that we have encountered here, I am very happy to have finished the rally and to take some strong points away from what has been a really difficult event for us.

"We've learnt a lot and made a lot of progress, so that is something positive."

Wilson added: "If there was one guy you would have counted on coming through those difficult conditions, it was Mads. He's driven a fantastic rally here."

Ostberg's team-mates - Evgeny Novikov, Thierry Neuville and Juho Hanninen – all failed to finish.

Novikov admitted he was pleased with his pace and that he was in third place when he went off the road, but he wanted the podium.

The Russian said: "It is true that we were setting some really good times before this, but nobody will remember that. History remembers results, so this is very disappointing for me.

"Having said that, we completed almost the entire rally and had some really good pace notes up until that point – that means we should be in a really good position when we come back here next year."

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