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WRC NEWS 

Petter Solberg says fourth place in Portugal is achievable

Petter Solberg, Ford, Portugal 2012Ford's Petter Solberg is targeting fourth place on this week's Rally of Portugal as he attempts to make up for crashing out of the lead in the rain on Friday.

The Norwegian slid off the road on the second stage yesterday, but has bounced back with fastest times today. The 2003 world champion is currently running in ninth place, more than two minutes down on Patrik Sandell's fourth-placed Mini, but he is sure he can bag more points over the second half of the event.

"I think fourth is possible," Solberg said. "We will keep on pushing, but at the same time I don't want to take too many risks.

"Yesterday was very frustrating. The fog was so bad, I couldn't see the end of the bonnet and I braked like normal, but the car wasn't stopping. I braked harder and harder, but we just dropped off the edge of the road at a really slow speed.

"We're looking forward now, though and the rest of the event is about getting some points."

Ford team director Malcolm Wilson added: "We set fourth as the target last night and it's achievable. We know he should be able to get there without too much risk. Compared with this time yesterday, if he was able to get there I think we would be playing a get out of jail card."

The Ford team was helped by a stewards' decision which ruled out an extra 15 minutes of Rally 2 penalties from the cancelled stages yesterday afternoon.

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