Chris Atkinson believes that Subaru have definitely turned a corner following the teams form on the Rally Argentina last weekend.
Atkinson and his team-mate Petter Solberg
ran strongly throughout the event and were on course for a double podium result from SS5. While Petter unfortunately retired on the final day, when he had a complete electrical failure in SS19, the Banbury-based outfit still had much to be positive about.
Indeed for Chris it was his third podium in four events and his second runners-up placing on the trot and he now moves up to third in the drivers' championship, just three points off Ford's Mikko Hirvonen.
"Another podium is fantastic for us and for the team, there's nothing that motivates the guys more than a great result at the end of all the hard work," reflected the Aussie. "The feeling in the car was just so much more consistent this weekend and it was easier to drive so I was able to push without making any big mistakes.
"It's clear we've taken some good steps forward with the car this year and it's sort of a surprise for me to be third in the championship at the moment. We're definitely moving in the right direction."
Asked how the team has finally managed to turn it around after two years in the doldrums, he added that it is all just down to hard work.
"It's all about development and getting everything working on the car. We know we had a couple of difficult years and finally we seem to have turned the corner with consistency and the performance of the car," he explained.
"We're still not on the pace of the leaders for sure but hopefully that's not far away and wins are not too far away either."
Despite his success though, Petter's exit with just three stages to go was a big blow for the Banbury-based squad.
"It's a real shame about Petter as he was going very well and we should have had two cars on the podium. It would have been really cool to have two Subarus up there. I feel sorry for Petter, obviously it sounds like it was out of his hands completely," Chris concluded.