Motor Sport News - - Rally News -

Kris Meeke says that he must rule out the mis­takes he made on last week’s Rally of Spain if he’s to pose a threat to Se­bastien Ogier next sea­son.

Meeke ul­ti­mately re­tired from the Salou-based event with an en­gine fault on the fi­nal morn­ing, but ad­mit­ted he was frus­trated with el­e­ments of his own per­for­mance.

“I’ve got to stop those kind of stupid mis­takes I was mak­ing,” he said. “I know what I have to do for next year and it’s so im­por­tant that we’re not do­ing some of the things we did in Spain. If you look at the re­sult, maybe it’s not so bad. We were fifth here last year and re­ally strug­gled, this time we were fifth but we’d rolled, had a punc­ture and a big spin – so maybe it’s not all bad.”

Much of Meeke’s frus­tra­tion came on the open­ing day’s gravel stages, where he had hoped to come to terms with roads that he’s never felt com­pletely com­fort­able on.

“That’s what I wanted from Fri­day,” he said. “I wanted to come away from there feel­ing I’d got­ten on top of those stages and I felt con­fi­dent with them. Then we rolled on the first stage!

“That was a stupid thing though, we only dropped 15 sec­onds with the roll and we were gen­uinely pretty un­lucky, it just caught the bank and tipped us over. Onto the wheels and away we went. By the end of the day, I was quick­est in Terra Alta, and I was happy with that. That was progress. But Satur­day there were just a few wee an­noy­ing things. They have to stop though.”

Meeke did at least end the sec­ond day on a high with fastest time on the Salou stage.

Meeke’s Citroen team-mate Craig Breen also en­dured an ac­tion-packed event. The Ir­ish­man’s DS 3 WRC suf­fered a bro­ken front drive­shaft on the first Satur­day stage, leav­ing him with rear-wheel drive only for three stages. With that prob­lem fixed, Breen set times con­sis­tently in the top six.

“I’m pleased with how the event’s gone from a driv­ing perspective,” he said. “We’ve shown good speed on the stages where we’ve been able to. It’s a shame about Satur­day morn­ing – the car was a bit of a hand­ful with rear-wheel drive only.”

Meeke and Breen will be joined by Stephane Le­feb­vre for the DS 3 WRC’S fi­nal out­ing in Abu Dhabi To­tal colours at next week’s Dayin­sure Wales Rally GB.

Meeke was quick but rolled early on

Pho­tos: mck­lein-im­age­

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