Vote of confidence
Yves Matton has insisted that Kris Meeke’s place in the Citroen Total Abu Dhabi squad is not under threat, despite his accident-strewn start to the 2014 season.
Meeke’s first full season with the French manufacturer got off to a promising start with a podium finish on January’s Rallye Monte-Carlo. But the Briton’s luck has nosedived since after crashing his DS3 WRC in Sweden, Mexico and Portugal.
Meeke said that his 2014 campaign was at “an all time low” after a faulty pace note led to his latest misdemeanor on Rally de Portugal, but the Citroen Racing boss still believes Meeke will bounce back.
“We are still in the same mind with Kris,” Matton told WRC.com. “We knew that it would be difficult for him in the first part of the season and we are still working together to improve his level as fast as possible.
“To be a talented driver you need a lot of things – psychological, mental and physical – to be at the top. All of our drivers have been attending a special institute to help them learn all of these things so they can concentrate and are in the best condition.
“Kris has been training there since December and he’s improving his levels all the time.”
Meeke’s future with Citroen was the subject of speculation immediately after his opening day crash in Portugal when onboard TV footage showed him saying: “that’s your career over” once his DS3 WRC had stopped sliding down a bank at the side of the road.
But Matton has insisted there was nothing in Meeke’s post-accident comments.
He explained: “His reaction was normal when a driver goes off like that. I was not happy after the crash in Portugal but we are really not thinking, and he knows it, that he is only there for four or five rallies. We are there for the championship and he will be there on the next rallies.”