Tuesday | 07 Mar 2017

Citroën admits early errors

Citroën Racing technical director Laurent Fregosi believes the team has learned from its mistakes during a languid start to the FIA World Rally Championship season at the opening two rounds.

Citroën sits bottom of the manufacturers’ championship after disappointing performances on the snowy asphalt of Rallye Monte-Carlo and the frozen tracks of Rally Sweden.

However, Fregosi is confident that with most of the C3 World Rally Car’s development last year taking place on gravel, the dirt roads of Rally Guanajuato Mexico (9 - 12 March) will be more welcoming for drivers Kris Meeke and Stéphane Lefebvre.

“For this, the season’s opening gravel rally, we think and hope that we will enjoy better performance. Our results in the opening two rounds of the season mainly come down to a lack of preparation on our part for the actual race conditions,” he said.

“The situation will be different in Mexico, because the C3 WRC has done most of its running on gravel. Having said that, we have learned the lessons from Sweden by correcting a certain number of issues.”

Both drivers prepared for Mexico with a test in Spain last month, focusing on the C3’s suspension and active central differential settings.

Meeke felt the team ‘headed in the right direction’ and team principal Yves Matton said he expected the Northern Irishman to run near the front.

“During the test session we held we questioned certain principles of the set-up and that helped us to identify the areas in which we can improve,” said Matton.

“We are striving for a good performance level in Mexico. Given his starting position for the opening leg, Kris will be trying to get among the leaders in the hope of kick-starting his season.”

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