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Q&A: Mikko Hirvonen - EXCLUSIVE.

by Rob Wilkins.


BP Ford number two driver, Mikko Hirvonen has had a tough start to the new season and while things turned around somewhat in Corsica two weeks ago when he finished fourth, the Finn is eager now to keep that up and ideally go at least one better in Argentina next weekend.

Here speaking exclusively to Crash.net Radio Mikko looks back on his season to date and predicts that the new Focus will just keep getting better and better. Watch out Citroen!



Q:
Mikko, we are five events into the new season. How do you assess things thus far for yourself?

Mikko Hirvonen:
Well it could be better [laughs]... it hasn't been so easy a start to the season for me. But, OK in the end we had some technical problems and my own mistake in Mexico, so we lost a lot of points because of those. But in the end it has been OK - it's not so bad.

Q:
You had your best result of the season in Corsica two weeks ago, when you finished fourth. You just missed out on third though, so I guess you had mixed feelings from there as well?

MH:
Yeah just missed it again like in Sweden, Mexico and Catalunya! But at least it was a fair fight. We didn't have any problems throughout the whole weekend - no mistakes or anything. Yeah it was a shame, as I really wanted to be third, but [Daniel] Sordo was just faster there. No kind of regrets on that one and fourth was a good position.

Q:
What about the other events this year? You finished seventh in Monte Carlo, which is your second best result to date this season.

MH:
Yeah I wasn't expecting so much there from Monte Carlo. That has always been a very, very difficult event for me. It was my best finish ever in Monte Carlo and we got two points. I was happy with that. OK we could have done better, but it was a good start to the season and the first time I have finished that rally. So I was pleased.

Q:
You were with Ford of course in 2003. What is it like to be back now with them?

MH:
It has been great, just great. I know everybody already from 2003 - all the mechanics, the engineers and the team management, everybody. It is just really good to be back. It is like being back at home actually. The atmosphere, everything has been very good through the whole season so far so far. I have really been enjoying it.

Q:
Have you noticed any changes?

MH:
There are always changes. I wouldn't say any big changes though. Some people are doing different things and also the engineers and mechanics are learning a lot or have been learning a lot since 2003. So everything basically works a little bit better. They have more history and information from those years. So no big changes and basically everybody is the still there from before.

Q:
After being a privateer last year you must be glad to be back in a factory team and doing all the events?

MH:


Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Mikko Hirvonen
Mikko Hirvonen / Jarmo Lehtinen - BP Ford Focus RS WRC
Mikko Hirvonen - BP Ford [Pic credit: Ford/worldrallypics.com]
Pontus Tidemand (SWE) Emile Axelsson (SWE), Ford Fiesta R5
Pontus Tidemand (SWE) Emile Axelsson (SWE), Ford Fiesta R5, WRC2 winners
Bernardo Sousa, Hugo Magalhaes, (Ford Fiesta RRC, #43)
Bernardo Sousa, Hugo Magalhaes, (Ford Fiesta RRC, #43)
Yurii Protasov , Pavlo Cheperin (Ford Fiesta WRC)
Yurii Protasov , Pavlo Cheperin (Ford Fiesta WRC)
Yurii Protasov , Pavlo Cheperin (Ford Fiesta WRC)
Yurii Protasov , Pavlo Cheperin (Ford Fiesta WRC)
Yurii Protasov , Pavlo Cheperin (Ford Fiesta WRC)
Martin Prokop, Michal Ernst (Ford Fiesta RS WRC, #21 Jipocar Czech National Team)
Martin Prokop, Michal Ernst (Ford Fiesta RS WRC, #21 Jipocar Czech National Team)
Martin Prokop, Michal Ernst (Ford Fiesta RS WRC, #21 Jipocar Czech National Team)
Martin Prokop, Michal Ernst (Ford Fiesta RS WRC, #21 Jipocar Czech National Team)
Martin Prokop, Michal Ernst (Ford Fiesta RS WRC, #21 Jipocar Czech National Team)
Martin Prokop, Michal Ernst (Ford Fiesta RS WRC, #21 Jipocar Czech National Team)

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