WRC » 16 June 2011
Acropolis Rally - Pre-event press conference
No testing for you ahead of this event but you were competing in the Norwegian Championship, does that in any way help with regard to your preparations?
Not really. Okay, I get some time in the car, but it's a S2000 car, so it's not exactly the same. But, it helps doing recce and the rally it helps for time in the car. But the conditions in Norway are different to here. We need to take one stage at a time and then improve the speed.
Will you do all the rallies this season?
I don't think we will do them all. I think we will do Finland and Germany, but it's not easy to get the money – and it takes a lot of money – for all the Championship. It's possible to get some more money to do some more, but we definitely won't go to Australia. We hope to get some good results which will help us to try and get some more money.
Kimi, Jordan was the last time we saw you behind the wheel of the Citroen DS3 – it's been a while! Is it good to be back?
Yes. It's good to be back.
You tested last week, how many kilometres did you cover and was the test successful?
It was last week, in France. It was good, we tried a few changes. It was mainly to get back in the car and drive, we did a bit more than 100 kilometres, just to get the feeling back.
And how is the feeling?
It's fine. This is a new place for me, new stages. The stages don't look very easy, but we will do our best.
Where are you trying to improve your performance?
I'm trying to improve all the time. Australia is a new place for us, it should be a little easier than some of the other rallies, but I try to improve all the time.
What do you know about the future? Will you commit to the WRC?
I don't know. I'll see after this season, but so far there is nothing sure.
You have done well on the rough WRC events - sixth in Jordan and a career-best fifth in Turkey last year. Do you think rough rallies suit you?
I don't think so, some of those places - like Turkey - was a new place – it was the same for everybody. The guys have been here before and I haven't done rallies for a while, it will be a tough rally for me. The stages are rough, but it's the same for everybody. The car is strong enough – but if we have problems, it happens and we will try and deal with it the best we can.
What's the toughest challenge for you on this rally?
It's a new place with new stages – that's the most difficult thing for us.
Question from the floor.
Q: Martin Holmes (Martin Holmes Rallying, UK).
To all the drivers, isn't shakedown the time to get the car ready for the rally? [Note: the precise regulations for shakedown from 2012 have yet to be finalised.]
I don't know what is the idea or who proposes it, but I think we start shakedown at 08:00 hrs and we are free, then at 10 [o'clock], we start qualifying. At shakedown now we go four times because we have to. Next year, I think we will have a real reason for shakedown.
The morning is very important to get the free runs. Some drivers – like I used to – come to these events with no testing and the first two hours is needed, especially if you want to try something in the car. But after that, like Sébastien said, at 10 it starts. I think it will work out.
Tagged as: Greece , ICE 1 Racing , Mads Ostberg , Ostberg , Citroën , Sébastien Loeb , Stobart , press conference , Latvala , Jari-Matti Latvala , Kimi Raikkonen , Ford , m-sport
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