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Pre-event press conference - Finland

I think this is more normal for me on gravel. The roads are a bit faster than on snow and the grip is good and the roads are a bit wider so we will see how we can do. We will try to finish the rally – I don't know if we can win it or not but we will have fun!

Q:
The car is prepared by Tommi Mäkinen Racing – has Tommi or your co-driver Kaj Lindstrom been giving you any advice ahead of this event?

KR:
The notes here are really important for you to go fast and it is something completely different to what I am used to. All the top guys here drive at similar speed and the notes make a big difference. It just takes time to learn and sometimes you get it wrong and it is not easy to know exactly where to go on the jumps. Hopefully we have the right notes and we shall have some fun, but I am responsible for the right notes.

Q:
Could we see you compete again at World level - is rallying just fun for you or could this be a future career?

KR:
Yes definitely. I am still in F1 and still have one more year contract but everything is open and it is nice to be a part of it here. I am a bit too young to do nothing so I will see. It all depends on which way F1 is going. Nobody is exactly sure how it will be. I am in no hurry.

Q:
Matti, a great performance from you in Finland saw you finish in seventh position overall last year. Is the plan to try and better that this year?

Matti Rantanen:
I think I need to be better than seventh this year! My goal is to be as close as I can to Mikko [Hirvonen] and Sébastien [Loeb].

Q:
You tested before the event; how was the car and were you pleased with how it went?

MR:
Risto was very happy with my speed and the stages are looking quite nice. There are lots of familiar stages and I am looking forward to tomorrow.

Q:
I hear you sat alongside Mikko Hirvonen during his test. What did you think and did you pick up any pointers?

MR:
At first I was just wondering about the speed because it feels really different being in the co-driver's seat, but it was good. It was nice to be able to watch Mikko drive and see what he does behind the wheel.

Q:
You obviously did well last year, what will be your approach this time around?

MR:
The most difficult thing will be the speed. I have driven slower cars so I really need to be comfortable with the car especially when we are driving those stages twice. It is difficult to say how I will do. I hope that we will have a good rally and I will get some publicity for my sponsors who have made this happen.



Questions from the floor.


Q:
Kimi, have you set any target results for this rally?

KR:
I just hope to get to the finish and match the same speeds as the other guys in my group.

Q:
What do you think about Michael Schumacher joining you as the second driver at Ferrari?

KR:
I actually heard it yesterday. For me it makes no difference who drives the second car. I don't think it is 100 per cent sure that he will drive as he is still checking things out. But it will be nice to have him as a team-mate. It nearly happened before.

Q:
Will you be doing more rallies next year in the WRC?

KR:



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Mikko Hirvonen (FIN), Ford Focus RS WRC08,  BP Ford Abu Dhabi World Rally Team
Sebastien Loeb (FRA), Citroën C4, Citroën Total World Rally Team
FIA rallycross action
FIA rallycross action
Ramona Karlsson
Ramona Karlsson
Jacques Villeneuve in World RX action
Dani Sordo (ESP) Marc Marti (ES), Hyundai I20 WRC, Hyundai Motorsport
Dani Sordo (ESP) Marc Marti (ES), Hyundai I20 WRC, Hyundai Motorsport
Mads Ostberg, Jonas Andersson (Citroen DS3 WRC, #4 Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT)
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)
Mads Ostberg, Jonas Andersson (Citroen DS3 WRC, #4 Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT)
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)
Thierry Neuville, Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC, #7 Hyundai Motorsport)
Thierry Neuville, Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC, #7 Hyundai Motorsport)
Andreas Mikkelsen ,Ola Floene (Volkswagen Polo R WRC, #9 Volkswagen Motorsport II)
Andreas Mikkelsen ,Ola Floene (Volkswagen Polo R WRC, #9 Volkswagen Motorsport II)

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