Citroen's Mikko Hirvonen
looks ahead to his home event, next week's Rally Finland, where he will be aiming for victory and out to start the second half of the WRC season as strongly as possible...Q:
Mikko, could you possibly be aiming for anything other than the win in Finland?Mikko Hirvonen:
No, although having said that, I wasn't dissatisfied to finish as runner-up last year. Seb and I fought hard all the way, right from the word go, with neither of us holding back at all and without any team orders. I lost a bit of time at the start of the race and I never managed to make it up, even with two perfect runs on Ouninpohja. That just goes to show how you need to be at 100 per cent from start to finish if you want to win in Finland. This year, I'm going to give it everything.Q:
It would be a good way of getting your bid for the championship back on course…Mikko Hirvonen:
For the time being, my thoughts are mainly on the Manufacturers' championship and I think we need to focus on that goal. Sure, the team is 46 points behind, but there are still 258 points up for grabs. If we are going to close the gap, we can't be content to finish second or third place; we need to win races.Q:
Some of the stages are being run in the opposite direction to previous years. Will that be an advantage for you?Mikko Hirvonen:
No, I don't think it makes much difference. The eight or nine leading drivers are well prepared and the two recce runs – plus the work done using video footage – should be enough for them to get close to the limit in the race itself. There's certainly no room for hesitancy and you have to be flat out all the time, but I think the usual preparation work will count more than any local knowledge of the roads in enabling me to do well here.