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Latvala promises new approach

Ford driver Jari-Matti Latvala has promised to take a more measured approach to the Rally of Portugal after his troubled start to the year

The Finn, desperate to get his season back on track after crashing on two of the three World Rally Championship events run so far this season, is taking a markedly different attitude to this week's fourth round of the series on the Algarve.

Latvala has elected not to have any split times beamed to his Ford Focus RS WRC 08 and he has instructed co-driver Miikka Anttila to shout at him when they get to the more technical sections of stages.

"I realise I have made some stupid mistakes and I do feel stupid about them," said Latvala. "Before the start of the season, I talked about making a more consistent start, but clearly that hasn't happened. I do believe I still have the speed. I need to start on a clean page.

"I want my co-driver to shout to wake me up when we come out of the fast sections of the stage into the slower places. We need to have more tone in his voice to make me understand that there is some technical places coming.

"I want to run my own rally this time. I need to build my self-confidence again and make sure I help my team to take some points off Citroen. I don't want the split times because I want to focus on what I am doing."

Latvala got his rally off to a promising start by going fastest on the shakedown today, two seconds ahead of his Ford team-mate Mikko Hirvonen. He then took fifth place on this evening's superspecial.

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