Suninen eyes expanded M-Sport programme

Teemu Suninen believes he has a chance to expand his part-time M-Sport Ford World Rally Championship programme beyond the currently planned eight 2018 rounds.

After impressing with top-six finishes in his first two outings in the WRC's top class in an additional M-Sport entry last year, WRC2 graduate Suninen has been rewarded with a seat in the third Ford alongside Sebastien Ogier and Elfyn Evans for most of this season.

He is due to step back to the R5 Ford for Monte Carlo and Germany, and is at present set to miss Corsica, Argentina and Australia completely - but said M-Sport team principal Malcolm Wilson had indicated that could change.

"It's possible," Suninen said when asked about the possibility of more rallies.

"I spoke to Malcolm about this and, if everything is working well and if the team is needing help with the manufacturers', then it's possible I can do more."

Suninen was in contention for a podium on his home rally in Finland last year before a spin put him back to fourth.

He believes winning there is realistic in 2018.

"I have to work to be faster on the slower rallies, and while I showed I can be quick in Corsica and Spain when I was in WRC2 last year, I need to work on the Tarmac," Suninen admitted.

"But it feels natural for me to be in fifth or sixth gear going over the crests.

"Toyota was really strong in Finland last year, it's from Finland so they have been testing a lot in these conditions, but this time we need to test better and try to win the whole rally.

"I hope we can be really strong and challenge."

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About this article
Series WRC
Drivers Teemu Suninen
Teams M-Sport
Article type Breaking news