Acropolis Rally - Pre-event press conference

For Greece it is not a big change. It is a rocky, hard rally. The choice of the tyres is not big, we only have 10 soft and most hard. We must be very careful because we have to go a long way. If you go on the soft tyre, I am sure you won't come back to service.

What do you hope to achieve in 2012?

Nasser Al-Attiyah:
To learn.

Mikko Hirvonen:
He wants a gold medal!

Nasser Al-Attiyah:
Yes an Olympic medal – he is right! But from the rally side, I would like a really good year. And from the other sport, in the Olympic Games, we have only two months but I will do a lot of training and I have a good feeling.

Jari-Matti will be doing the Winter Olympics next time!

Jari Matti -Latvala:
I think I need to train more. Maybe I should take Mikko as my trainer…

Questions from the floor

Q: Marcus Stier (Sport Auto, Germany).
Jari-Matti, titanium is banned in world rally cars now. Do you comply?

Mikko Hirvonen:

Jari-Matti Latvala:
Titanium was used in old world rally cars. And, as there are younger guys driving than me, I am already the older specification, so I am allowed to use this!

Q: Reiner Kuhn (Motorsport Aktuell, Switzerland).
A question for Jari-Matti and Mikko. Do you have special suits or safety clothes for your shoulder Jari-Matti, and Mikko you have driven with the American HANS system, is it better?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
I have a standard HANS device and specially made padding which we have modified to use it how the FIA has advised us. It's thick padding under the HANS device which divides the pressure away from the collarbone.

Mikko Hirvonen:
I am using the new, American-style HANS device. I am not sure it makes a big difference. Maybe it's a bit more time consuming to put it on, but there is less pressure on the chest. It feels like I can get the [seat] belts on tighter and I feel I have more room to move my arms and do silly things in the car.

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Mikko Hirvonen (FIN), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total World Rally Team
Evgeny Novikov (RUS) Dmitry Chumak (RUS), Ford Fiesta WRC
Nasser Al-Attiyah (QA) Giovanni Bernacchini (ITA), Citroen DS3 WRC
Jari-Matti Latvala (FIN) Miikka Anttila (FIN), Ford Fiesta RS WRC, Ford World Rally Team

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