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Q&A: Markko Martin - EXCLUSIVE

9 December 2006

by Rob Wilkins


Former Peugeot and Ford WRC works driver, Markko Martin was at the Wales Rally GB last weekend, the final round in the 2006 FIA World Rally Championship. Crash.net Radio caught up with the Estonian, who was understandably keeping a low profile, following all that happened on last year's event...



Q:
Markko, here you are at the Rally GB. Is it nice to catch up with some of the people from the WRC? I noticed you were in the Ford service area a moment ago...

Markko Martin:
Yeah it was great. It made sense to come and see the world champions. It was interesting to see them again.

Q:
This year you have done a few bits and bobs. You competed in the Danish TouringCar Championship how did that go? Did you enjoy it?

MM:
It was OK.

Q:
You did a rally in Ireland a few months back too. Did you enjoy that?

MM:
It was the Cork Rally, I did that and I finished second.

Q:
Was it good to get back into a WRC car again?

MM:
It was good, but it was quite hard work to come back after a long time - straight into mixed conditions, a tarmac rally, very fast roads. It wasn't very easy to make a comeback. But it was great to be in Ireland and to do the rally there.

Q:
What have you made of this event? Marcus Gronholm has been pretty dominant hasn't he after Mikko Hirvonen went out?

MM:
It is pretty much what was expected, in terms of what has happened in the last couple of rallies [and what has been the pattern of late]. So, there are no real surprises. I haven't really followed it a lot though, so I can't really comment any more.

Q:
You were with Ford a few years back [from 2002 to 2004 in the WRC]. It must have been nice to have seen them do so well and take the manufacturers' championship in NZ?

MM:
Yeah, the BP Ford World Rally team has been very close for many years and been second [in the manufacturers']. Finally they have managed to clinch the title and for sure it is good for them. All their efforts have finally paid off.

Q:
Were you catching up with some of your old mechanics earlier? Are they still around?

MM:
Yeah, there were some familiar faces around.

Q:
What are your plans over Christmas and the New Year now... are you back home to Estonia?

MM:
I don't have any plans at all really.

Q:
Looking to 2007, is there anything on the horizon that you can talk about?

MM:
No I don't have any plans on the racing side either.

Q:
Have you enjoyed this break from the WRC, as last year's Rally GB was obviously very traumatic for you (after the crash that claimed the life of your co-driver, Michael Park)?

MM:
Yeah for me it [the break] is OK. I am finished with the World Rally Championship though and now I will try to move on.


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