World Rally champion Sebastien Ogier has identified Citroen's Kris Meeke as one of his main rivals for this week's Rally Germany.
Despite not having competed in Germany since his Mini WRC programme in 2011, Meeke's pace on the Trier rally has always been strong, particularly in his Junior WRC years.
He was also a multiple winner on asphalt in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, and arrives in Germany fresh from a career-best WRC performance in Finland, where he challenged the Volkswagens for the lead and became the first Briton to take a podium on the event since Richard Burns in 2003.
"We have some real asphalt specialists in the field, but I will be keeping an eye on Kris Meeke," said Ogier.
"He was damn quick in Finland and is also very good on asphalt."
Volkswagen Motorsport director Jost Capito echoed his driver's concerns about the Northern Irishman's potential on the WRC's first all-asphalt round of the season.
"With the confidence Kris has coming from Finland, I think he will be able to fight right at the front in Germany," said Capito.
"He was very good in Finland, the first event where he had some experience of the DS3 WRC, and we know how good he is on asphalt."