Mads Ostberg insists that his aim for the 2013 World Rally Championship season is to secure a first 'proper' victory in the series following his move to the Qatar M-Sport World Rally Team.
Ostberg clinched his maiden success in Portugal last year while with the Adapta team, albeit only following the exclusion of Mikko Hirvonen for a tchnical infringement.
The 25-year-old Norwegian will now spearhead the Ford team's challenge during the season ahead and he said his focus was on taking M-Sport to the top of the podium in the year ahead.
“It's a huge chance,” he replied when asked by Crash.net
about the opportunity he had been given. “I got a win in Portugal last year but that wasn't how I wanted to get one and I am still looking for my first proper victory in the WRC this season. We have had many podiums and need to focus on getting more wins this year. That is the first target and we have to work to get the results that we expect and the team expects. After that we need to see what we can do, but first of all we will focus on winning some rallies.
“[This] is absolutely the best thing for me and my career. M-Sport are a proper manufacturer team in my eyes and this is the best opportunity there was for me. It's a big season after we managed to put together a good season last year in a private team, and now we make the step up to a 'proper' team. It will be a good step for me and I have to cope with the pressure and get some good results. It is very important.”
Ostberg added that he would wait and see if a championship bid was possible during the season ahead, although he conceded it could be 2014 before he is able to really make a challenge for the crown.
“It is very open with Sebastien [Loeb] not doing a full season but it is difficult to know what you want to achieve before the season starts,” he said. “There are a lot of things that are new so we need to start the season focused on getting wins and then see what we can do in the championship. It might be a bit too hard to win the championship in my first year with a manufacturer team.”