Neuville: I've proved I can be clever enough for WRC success

Thierry Neuville believes his World Rally Championship podiums this year have proved he can be 'clever' enough to succeed at the top level

Neuville: I've proved I can be clever enough for WRC success

The Belgian struggled to complete events without incident in his rookie season in Citroen's junior team in 2012, and then commenced his M-Sport career this year with an early crash while running fourth on the Monte Carlo Rally.

But he took his maiden WRC podium in Mexico and added another one last weekend in Greece.

Coupled with two other top-four finishes, those results have elevated Neuville to fifth in the championship, ahead of team-mates Mads Ostberg and Evgeny Novikov plus Citroen works driver Dani Sordo, approaching mid-season.

"I didn't think this would come so soon," Neuville admitted. "I showed speed last year, but now I want to show that I can go to the finish of rallies.

"Especially in Greece this was very important for me. This result, especially for the future, shows that I can be clever as well.

"Sometimes it's not so easy. I think like a 24-year-old who is young in the head. It's not easy to see the [faster] times and then to think I can do the same, but I am not allowed..."

Asked if his performance was a sign of a new approach, Neuville replied: "not a new one, but a clever one. I will come back a bit to a faster pace and try to stay on the road.

"Finding the way between them both is one of the hardest things for a driver with less experience. But it has gone great."

shares
comments
Acropolis Rally: Citroen's protest against Volkswagen rejected
Previous article

Acropolis Rally: Citroen's protest against Volkswagen rejected

Next article

VW never lost faith in Jari-Matti Latvala, says boss Jost Capito

VW never lost faith in Jari-Matti Latvala, says boss Jost Capito
Why WRC's Safari tour is more than just a rally Plus

Why WRC's Safari tour is more than just a rally

OPINION: A source of national pride in Kenya, the Safari Rally is also a sporting, cultural and economic phenomenon. And as last weekend's World Rally Championship round reminded us, it's a key driver in establishing Africa’s place in world motorsport

WRC
Jun 29, 2022
How Rovanpera tamed a wild Safari Rally Plus

How Rovanpera tamed a wild Safari Rally

The Safari Rally acted as a brutal test of driver and car resolve as multiple retirements opened the path for a historic Toyota 1-2-3-4 triumph, headed by star Kalle Rovanpera. But keeping things clean was only half of the challenge, as a well-timed charge when conditions worsened allowed the Finn to take control

WRC
Jun 27, 2022
How Tanak turned the tables to deliver Hyundai a timely WRC triumph Plus

How Tanak turned the tables to deliver Hyundai a timely WRC triumph

The 2019 champion has been a bit-part player recently, but Ott Tanak ended a 15-month drought in fine style with a dominant win in Sardinia. On a weekend when championship leader Kalle Rovanpera struggled with cleaning the road, his Hyundai rival has made his belated arrival into the title race and given cause for those predicting a walkover from the Toyota star to pause

WRC
Jun 6, 2022
How Rovanpera overcame rallying royalty in Portugal to extend his WRC lead Plus

How Rovanpera overcame rallying royalty in Portugal to extend his WRC lead

Although the Rally Portugal entry list featured World Rally Championship royalty in Sebastiens Loeb and Ogier, victory was secured by rallying's rising star in Kalle Rovanpera. Here's the story of his 2022 hat-trick, as his key rivals faltered among the gravel and asphalt ahead of them

WRC
May 23, 2022
The former WRC star playing the unsung hero role for Rovanpera Plus

The former WRC star playing the unsung hero role for Rovanpera

Kalle Rovanpera’s 2022 World Rally Championship displays have been spectacular, with the Toyota driver benefitting from a secret weapon in his crew to win two of the opening three rallies. But while the former challenger to Sebastien Loeb won’t take credit for his fellow Finn's performances, a key bond has been formed which could prove key to Rovanpera’s title charge

WRC
Apr 29, 2022
How Rovanpera's Croatia turnaround sent a message to his WRC rivals Plus

How Rovanpera's Croatia turnaround sent a message to his WRC rivals

After a dominating Rally Croatia, a wrong tyre choice on the final day looked to have undone all Kalle Rovanpera's hard work and left him with a mountain to climb heading into the power stage. That he emerged the winner all the same has surely quelled any lingering doubts that the Finn is the man to beat in the 2022 WRC

WRC
Apr 25, 2022
How M-Sport's faith in Loubet led to a WRC reprieve after a dismal 2021 Plus

How M-Sport's faith in Loubet led to a WRC reprieve after a dismal 2021

It's fair to say 2021 was a year to forget for Pierre-Louis Loubet. A maiden full World Rally Championship season offered hope but soon turned into a nightmare that ended in hospital, after being hit by a car in a road traffic accident. Now handed a lifeline by M-Sport, the Frenchman is desperate to rebuild his career

WRC
Apr 20, 2022
Why WRC mechanics deserve more respect Plus

Why WRC mechanics deserve more respect

The drivers get the glare of attention, but it’s the mechanics who are key to the operation of any World Rally Championship car. Autosport donned a set of overalls and joined M-Sport on a Belgian national rally event to get an inside look into the trials and tribulations of a rally mechanic

WRC
Apr 17, 2022