Safari will be make or break, says Burns

Subaru star Richard Burns says nothing less than a victory will do on the Safari Rally in two weeks' time, if he is to keep his hopes of winning this year's World Rally Championship alive

Safari will be make or break, says Burns

Burns has yet to win an event so far this year and is currently 15 points adrift of joint championship leaders Colin McRae and Tommi Makinen and 11 behind Carlos Sainz. The Brit knows that he needs to win next time out to keep in touch with the top three.

"For me it will be over if I don't win on Safari," Burns exclusively told this week's Motorsport News. "The Safari will be massively important for me - more than it will be for Colin."

McRae has won the last three rallies on the trot with Burns coming home second in Argentina and Cyprus. But the 32-year-old was forced to retire as he was closing on leaders Carlos Sainz and Colin McRae with propshaft failure in Greece.

Despite the pressure on Burns to win in Africa, he is optimistic about his chances.

"If there was any rally that I would pick, going into, to say 'I am going to win,' I would say Safari or Great Britain," said Burns. "The Safari is a good rally to be going into."

Burns also highlighted the fact that the rallies coming up after Safari will be crucial to his title hopes as they are the last events before the two asphalt rallies in Italy and France, when the all-conquering Citroens will likely steal the honours.

"Finland is a good rally for me and so is New Zealand," said Burns. "We've got to do something on those rallies before we get to the Tarmac, when we're going to lose the opportunity, because of Peugeot and Citroen."

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