by clicking the arrows at the side of the page, or by using the toolbar.
by clicking anywhere on the page.
by dragging the page around when zoomed in.
by clicking anywhere on the page when zoomed in.
web sites or send emails by clicking on hyperlinks.
Email this page to a friend
Search this issue
Index - jump to page or section
Archive - view past issues
GP Week : Issue 162
34 GPWEEK.com // PARTNERS: RALLY >>> INTERVIEW The decision to go to the Citroen had been a bit similar to the year before with the Fiesta, but at least we then had the previous experience of the old ST, and with the help of M-Sport and Ford it worked out well. With Citroen it was a bit of a gamble but I think it paid off. I had never driven a Citroen before. Guess I got lucky. With the DS3, it was hard for me and the team to learn the car, the dampers, the setup, tyres and everything. The people who knew the answers mostly spoke French whereas our team spoke only English – or Welsh! There was so much to discover getting to know the car. It was tricky but good fun. Just another non-stop learning curve in rallying. After all our successes in 2010, 2011 was a bit flat. It sounds like we were just jumping from number 2 to 3, just one digit, but going up from R2 to R3 is big. To get involved with the set up of the car and learning the Citroen way, everything had to go up a huge step. I struggled in 2011 but we stayed with the Citroens for 2012. When you were planning this year, what changes did you make to your attitude and your planning? Quite similar, we were a lot more focussed on learning the set-up of the car and how this car should be driven. Last year was learning how to drive cars. This year we concentrated on set-up, learning how to get the best of the car, making it go as fast as it can go and also trying to improve myself and my driving, my fitness and the pacenotes. When you think of the Clio R3 which is a faster car, so why is the Citroen R3 so good? It’s the balance and the chassis of the Citroen which are just very very good. It is so well balanced and the handling is very good. There is so much detail in the engineering of it, where the weight is in the car, where your weight is. Also it has got so much torque it really performs well on slippery tarmac and on gravel roads and twisty roads. Everything about the car and the balance are on tap. Citroen just know how to make a car handle especially on tarmac. I think their philosophy is when the car is right on tarmac it will be good everywhere” . Your aim for 2012 is just IRC 2WD? Yes. Last year we tried to do too much. I don't think that helped even if it all worked the year before. We tried to recreate 2010 but it just didn't work, we were very muddled, we were always rushing around to the events. This year we are concentrating on just the IRC and we are very focussed on it. What are you ultimately aiming to do? I think every driver aims for a factory seat, up there, top flight. I would like to go further if everything allows me to. I started off with a three-year plan. This is my third year so my future depends on how we get on this year. I'd like to do some rallies in a four-wheel- drive. So far I have only tackled one event in a Mitsubishi and one in a Super 2000. An R5 would be the obvious next step. There is loads of talk about R5 but there is no definite news yet. It would be interesting. I would lovetohaveagoandjustseewhatIcando in a car like that. Best memories so far? 2010 was a great year and I think the one memory I will never forget was the jump in Turkey (left) – that was brilliant. Too many good memories, everything was really good, especially Rally GB was awesome on home ground with Welsh friends and very good fun. But then of course what happened this year in Sicily puts everything into perspective. Gareth Roberts and I had done Monte Carlo together last year...