Kankkunen faces uncertain future

Multiple World Rally Champion Juha Kankkunen will decide on his 2001 plans shortly, but his chances of contesting the season with Subaru look slim

Kankkunen faces uncertain future

The 41-year-old, who has spent the past two seasons with Subaru, is confident of finding a part-time World Rally Championship drive in some shape or form. He has been a works driver since 1983, and has just completed a test for the Japanese marque in Lapland.

"Everything will be very flexible," he told Autosport. "What is for sure is that I won't do any of the asphalt rounds, but after that we will see. I will be doing some of the rallies I like, but it is a question of deciding which ones. I hope to be able to say for sure soon."

Subaru is committed to running Richard Burns, Petter Solberg and Markko Martin next year, and running a fourth car for Kankkunen would place a big strain on Prodrive's resources. Any programme for the Finn would be dependent on whatever sponsorship he can raise.

Prodrive's Subaru chief David Lapworth told Autosport's sister publication Motoring News: "If we get a massive sponsor and if [Subaru owner] Fuji Heavy Industries thinks it's a good idea, that would be one of the things on the list, but it's looking unlikely. Our first priority has to be towards Richard [Burns] and making sure the car's competitive."

Solberg and Martin are currently carrying out the bulk of testing of the new Impreza 44S, while Burns will concentrate on set-ups for Monte Carlo, the first round of next year's championship.

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