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Wilson Jr eyes top-eight.

Britain's Matthew Wilson will be hoping to go one better this year on the Rallye Deutschland and break into the top eight in his Stobart Ford Focus RS WRC07.

Wilson has shown steady progress on his last two trips to Germany, finishing twelfth in 2006 and ninth in 2007 and now he will be out to try and make the most of that experience.

In addition he also conducted a small pre-event test last weekend in Trier, along with fellow Stobart Ford drivers' Gigi Galli and Francois Duval and that will have helped him familiarise himself with Pirelli's P-Zero tarmac tyre which will be available in both soft and hard compounds.

Speaking prior to the test, he noted that the runs will definitely be beneficial: "We have just come from a difficult rally in Finland and now we are going to another one in Germany," said the 21-year-old, who has been preparing for the tenth round in the Word Rally Championship by getting some driver coaching from world renowned expert Rob Wilson.

"The event is like three different rallies in three days over different types of stages and each with their own unique challenges. We will have a test before the rally which will be a huge benefit especially after not having driven on tarmac since January and for sure that will help to give us a good feeling for the start of the event. As always the weather here can also make a big difference so the safety crews will have a huge part to play."

Henning Solberg meanwhile also expects the event to be a difficult one and like Wilson he won't have to worry about competing for manufacturers' points, as Gigi Galli and Francois Duval have been nominated for this round by the Stobart team.

This will be only Henning's second attempt at the Rallye Deutschland, despite some 65 WRC starts, and while the Norwegian is still pretty inexperienced on tarmac, he is nevertheless also after a place in the top-eight.

"I think this will be a challenging event for me as I have only done the event once before and that was last year. But we still need to collect points and the aim is for a good result," he confirmed.

"The best way for me to achieve this is to concentrate on improving my performance from last year and get closer to the top guys' times on tarmac. Then we will see how that leaves us in the overall classification.

"I like the more open, normal road stages but find it difficult on the military ranges. I need to feel the car flowing and on those stages it is very stop and start and you can't really get into a good rhythm."


Related Pictures

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Matthew Wilson (GBR), Ford Focus RS WRC 07, Stobart VK M-Sport Ford Rally Team
Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC, Monza, [Credit: Hyundai Motorsport]
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Podium - Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) Anders Jaeger Synnevag (NOR) Volkswagen Polo R WRC
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