MIKKO HIRVONEN

“I was in Spain to pick up my foot­ball win­ning wager...”

Motor Sport News - - Round -

A few peo­ple were sur­prised to me back in Spain last week. But I had to come, it was re­ally im­por­tant for me to see Scott [Martin] again… he owed me some money.

It’s im­por­tant that Mo­tor­sport News read­ers un­der­stand what this money was owed for: it was be­cause Liver­pool beat Chelsea last month. I bet Scotty Liver­pool would win and, of course, they did! Even bet­ter, Liver­pool beat them at Chelsea.

Ac­tu­ally, tak­ing Scott’s money is only part of the rea­son I’m here.

The other rea­son is to do gravel notes for Craig and Scott. They asked me if I would do it and, to be hon­est, I re­ally fan­cied it. It was great to see a lot of old friends again and, more than that, it was fan­tas­tic to have the chance to help th­ese boys. They are both very good mates of mine and any­thing I can do to help with the op­por­tu­nity they have, I’m go­ing to do it.

I might have changed my mind a lit­tle bit if they’d men­tioned the 0400hrs call though. Bloody hell that was early!

I re­ally en­joyed work­ing on this side of the sport. It was quite tough for me, I strug­gled a lit­tle bit on Satur­day morn­ing when there were quite a few damp patches, but we’re get­ting there. It’s been great to be back in the sport, but away from the lime­light and away from the kind of pol­i­tics of the ser­vice park. When the talk started get­ting se­ri­ous, it was time for us to get into the gravel note car and drive away up into the hills again. I loved that.

A lot of peo­ple were ask­ing me if there’s any chance I would come back and do some ral­lies. Of course, I am al­ready com­mit­ted for Dakar next year and that’s go­ing to be a tough race, but the WRC? I don’t think so.

Maybe it would be nice to do one rally, but I don’t think it’s worth all the stress and ev­ery­body ask­ing if this is the start of a come­back. And any­way, after the time away I re­ally think I would strug­gle with the rhythm in the recce – that’s where you re­ally make your rally. I think the driv­ing would still be close, but you need to be so ac­cu­rate and on it in the recce and you get that from do­ing it all the time.

If I want to do a rally, I go and do one in my own rally car.

We are talk­ing about me maybe do­ing some more next year and I’m in­ter­ested for that. We’ll need to sit down and talk a lit­tle bit more after this one, but if I can help Craig and Scott with the recce and maybe bring a lit­tle bit of what I used to do, then I’d be very happy with that.

And if Scott keeps pay­ing out on his bets, it makes sense fi­nan­cially for me to come too!

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