RALLYING: Victory for Burns but title goes to Makinen

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The Independent Online
RICHARD BURNS won the Australian Rally in Perth yesterday - but it is Tommi Makinen who rules the world for the fourth year in a row.

Burns comfortably won his last-day shoot-out with Spain's Carlos Sainz to record the fourth victory of his career, but Makinen ensured there would be no thrilling title finale in the season-ending Network Q British Rally. The 35-year-old Finn finished four and a half minutes adrift of Burns, but had cruised through the last two days to ensure he collected the four points he needed for success.

Burns answered any doubts over whether he had the ability and calmness to defend a final-day advantage as he fended off the challenge of Sainz in the other Toyota.

The Spaniard did cut his overnight deficit to a second on the opening stage of the last four timed sections. But Burns, co-driven by Robert Reid, responded by increasing his lead to almost 12 seconds, which Sainz could only reduce by a fraction on the last two stages.

Results, Digest, page 9