Petter Solberg has said that he was happy with his form on the Acropolis Rally at the weekend - and he believes that eventual winner, Mikko Hirvonen would have struggled to hold him off.

The Norwegian, who set seven top-five stage times, including winning SS9, was running in a strong second on day two, only 21.9 seconds adrift of P1, when he hit a rock in the penultimate test and broke the suspension on his privately entered Citroen Xsara WRC.

Although he managed to make it through that test and then limped through SS12 and back to service, after a closer look at the car and following discussions with his team, he opted to retire and concentrate on preparing for Poland, rather than re-join under the SupeRally in eleventh - almost twelve minutes adrift.

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"The car is fixed enough so that I could have re-started [on Sunday], but I have only one car and if something should happen I would be in trouble for Poland," he explained. "We have worked hard over the week and we never give up, but at the same time we need to keep a close eye on our budget.

"All-in-all though I'm actually quite happy with the weekend. It was really good fun being out there and fighting for good times, with a competitive car.

"We were on a good pace, and it would not have been easy for Hirvonen to keep us behind. It is good to know that our improvements worked out. Now I'm only looking ahead to the Rally Poland."

Asked about that crucial incident in SS11, when the front left top mount suddenly burst out through the bonnet, he revealed that he was on a charge and keen to try and break a winless streak that stretches back to '05.

"I was attacking. I was going flat out on a straight when suddenly we heard a 'boom' and the top mount came out through the bonnet," he added.

"On the road section we managed to get it together with an adjustable spanner. We got through stage SS11 and SS12 with it, but we lost a lot of time. It is a pity. We were very unlucky..."