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GP Week : Issue 3
36 G P WEEK: Tell us about your first 100 days in the office … MARK DEANS: I am proud and honoured to have one of the best possible jobs in the sport, especially at a time when we are being so successful. I will have been in the company 30 years next year, working in many different areas. The rally team has made good progress so far this year, better than we might have hoped. I feel we are on track to win the manufacturers’ title for the third time running, which is what we really want to achieve. That is our priority at he moment. All credit to Malcolm Wilson and everyone at M-Sport for getting us to this point. What do you make of your drivers this year? It is great to see how Jari- Matti is going, and all credit to Mikko [Hirvonen] for keeping everything calm. They are two quite different characters. Even at his young age, Mikko has got a wise head on his shoulders – he is as cool as a cucumber. Jari-Matti might be even younger but he already has a lot of experience. He concentrates on driving the cars and does not worry about anything else. I think they are going to continue working extremely well together. I think they learn from each other. Have the proper recce cars and the pre-event testing, which he gets from being in the BP Abu Dhabi team, helped Jari-Matti turn the corner in his career? I think it has added his final three or four percent. When you saw his performance last year on the Wales Rally GB we knew he was extremely quick. He now has the chance to prepare himself, get to understand the car better before each event. This year you can see he is able to deliver the goods right from the start of a rally, without having to adjust himself as an event progresses.