Before Rally of Turkey
Born January 8 1980 in La Roche sur Yon (F).
Winner of the 2005 C2 Rallye Challenge. First season in the JWRC.
Turkey is the last event on your 2006 programme. How do you analyse your year so far?
"We'll see at the end of the Rally
of Turkey, but my feeling so far is positive. I was asked to focus on learning, getting as many kilometres under my belt as possible and finishing events without any precise objective regarding my result. I've finished every event to date, with the exception of Catalunya where I was halted by a technical problem while lying 2nd. In the four other rallies, I was in a position to finish on the podium. However, I made a small error which cost me a lot of time in Sardinia and I was caught by surprise on the last stage in Germany. In Finland, had I been told before the start that I would have finished 4th, I been signed at once!"
What about your learning curve regarding pacenotes and your feeling with the car. Is there room for improvement there?
"Pacenotes have never been a major issue. My system is based on that of Sebastien Loeb
and works perfectly over the wide variety of terrains we have come across so far. I don't think I have a problem there. Regarding my feeling with the car, I needed to get used to driving a Super 1600. They are quite pointy to drive. And even though they are easier on asphalt, I still need to improve in soiled conditions. I don't let myself go enough.
At the same time, I have had to accustom myself to driving a two-wheel drive car on the loose and here too there is room for improvement, especially over the rougher, cut-up portions. Without wishing to appear overly confident, I am following the same approach I used in the French C2 Rallye Challenge : I profited from the first year to learn and the following year I won…"
The Rally of Turkey promises to be tough going for the Super 1600s cars…
"That's what I've heard and it's also what the videos show. Happily, the C2 Super 1600 is extremely strong, both in the ruts and over the bumps. I still don't know how I will approach Turkey. I hesitate between two options. I tell myself it could be a lottery and that if I show I can finish then I could perhaps obtain a good result. Or maybe I will try to end the year with a bit of panache and show that I have learnt enough to be competitive next year and perhaps at last claim the podium finish that has eluded me all season."
Press release Citroen