The Brit impressed at last week’s Rally Finland, when he returned to the WRC after 18 months away to drive a DS3 WRC as stand in for Al Qassimi at the Abu Dhabi Citroen Total team.
Meeke’s promising run came to a premature end, however, when he rolled out of fifth place on the penultimate stage.
Despite the setback, Al Qassimi today paid tribute to his deputy, and hinted that he might get another opportunity to prove his potential.
On his @khalidbinfaisal Twitter account, Al Qassimi wrote: “Chances may come & go, yet Kris deserves them - that's how he'll grow. @krismeeke to you and all your fans I'm thinking of another chance.”
Another chance could come at Rally Australia later this year, an event Al-Qassimi is expected to miss. But in comments he made earlier this week to the United Arab Emirates media, Al Qassimi revealed his team was also looking to 2014.
“Kris did an excellent job and I wasn’t surprised,” Al Qassimi told Gulf News. “He was up there with Mikko and much quicker than Dani, and he’s given us a lot to think about. Our first priority is to get the best we can out of our drivers for the rest of the season, and we need to be on the podium. But already we’re looking ahead to next season, and Kris could get more chances.
“He’s a very good driver, that’s why we picked him. We considered several drivers, but decided Kris would be the best choice and he proved us right. It was just unfortunate that he didn’t get the finish he deserved. I really felt for him, especially as I rolled in the same car in the Acropolis Rally.”