Meeke: Right place, right time

Kris Meeke believes his switch to Toyota Gazoo Racing represents his best chance yet for WRC success.

The 39-year-old has not driven in the series since a huge crash at last year's Vodafone Rally de Portugal led to him being sacked by Citroën, putting his career in jeopardy.

But he is ready to return to the stages after Toyota threw him a lifeline in the shape of a full-season contract to drive its Yaris WRC in 2019.

After a short-lived spell at MINI and difficult times at Citroën, Meeke is delighted to have another chance to prove himself.

“Considering what has come before, I think this is the best opportunity of my career so far,” he told wrc.com.

“My three-year contract with MINI turned out to be six rallies, I went with Citroën when they moved to touring cars, and when the C3 came along it was quite obvious things weren’t right.

"For the first time ever in my career I feel I’m in the right place at the right time.

“If someone had asked me at the beginning of 2018 where I’d like to be the following year, I would have said here [at Toyota].”

As well as a new car and team, Meeke will have a new co-driver in 2019, after bringing in Hayden Paddon’s former co-driver, Seb Marshall in place of Paul Nagle.

“I’d been with Paul for 11 years so the relationship had been cemented for so long. But after what happened last year and a bit of time away, I said if I’m going to go back I want a completely fresh start,” the Northern Irishman explained.

“I’m very happy to have Seb beside me and the relationship has got off to a good start.”

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