by Rob Wilkins
TO HEAR THE INTERVIEW IN FULL WITH FRANCOIS DUVAL: CLICK HERE
Francois Duval was the star of the recent Rallye Deutschland, securing the runners-up spot on the final day after a truly fantastic performance in his OMV Kronos-run Citroen Xsara WRC.
caught up with the Belgian recently to chat to him about that event and to find out if he is going to be able to do any more events during the remainder of the season...
Francois, I guess you must still be on a high following that drive in Germany, which was just outstanding. How pleased were you with your performance there?
Yes I am very happy. It as was a really good performance for me. I hope I can do the rallies in Spain, Corsica and the RAC [Rally GB] now, but that is dependent on getting the budget.
Obviously it was only your second WRC event of the season - and your first with the Citroen Xsara WRC, since 2005. How difficult did that make things?
The Xsara is a really good car. We had the active differentials and we had no problems at all. I stalled the engine once, but during the rest of the event we had no issues. It is a nice car.
What did you make of the OMV Kronos Citroen team and your team-mate, Manfred Stohl?
It is a good team. I am very happy with Manfred – he is a really nice guy. Everything was OK.
On the final day you were quickest in every single test and seemingly pressurised Marcus Gronholm into a mistake. It was a very strong end to the event for you…
It was a good final day. On the last day I went really quickly. I managed to put some pressure on Marcus for Sebastien and he gained some extra points [as a result to close the gap a bit more in the drivers' championship]. The result was really nice for me, for Citroen and for Seb.
Did you have any problems with the cow on the last stage, like Marcus and Petter Solberg?