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Teams hope Rally Poland returns

Mikko Hirvonen, Ford, Rally Poland 2009World Rally Championship manufacturers Ford and Citroen are both keen to see Rally Poland back in the WRC fold in 2011 following the nation's return to top flight rallying last week.

Rally Poland's future in the world championship is now in the hands of the WRC's promoter International Sportsworld Communicators, the firm which is putting together the calendar for 2011. A source within ISC admitted they had been impressed with both the popularity and professionalism of the event and that it was certainly 'in the mix' for 2011 and beyond.

Ford team director Malcolm Wilson said: "What Rally Poland has shown here is the perfect template for a rally. It's a great format: all really condensed. All [the stages within] 50kms from the service park. Here and Mexico are the perfect template. In our book, this is what a WRC round should be like."

Asked whether Poland should return in two years, Wilson added: "With a lot of concrete things put in place: service park, accessibility, it needs proper ground plan management.

"It would be nicer if it was closer to Warsaw or Krakow, from a transportation point of view, but I wouldn't want them to lose the character of the stages and what's here.

"It's the first time for a long time that I've seen all of the drivers so happy with the enjoyment of driving. That's something we haven't seen, that's another positive aspect we need to come across on television. Whether they're first, second or third, all of the drivers are saying how fantastic these roads are and we need to let people know just how fantastic our sport is."

Reigning world champion Sebastien Loeb added that he would be happy to see the fast Polish stages return to the calendar.

"The roads are nice, it's good to have more fast gravel rallies," he said. "Okay, it was not such an enjoyable rally for me, but on Saturday I pushed and I liked the roads. The number of spectators was quite impressive, on Saturday there were many, many people."

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