Citroen believes it set WTCC competition level 'too high'

Citroen team principal Yves Matton believes his outfit set the level of competition too high for its World Touring Car Championship rivals when it joined in 2014

Citroen believes it set WTCC competition level 'too high'

The French firm has dominated the previous two WTCC campaigns, taking both the 2014 and '15 manufacturer crowns as well as assisting Jose Maria Lopez to both drivers' championships.

That trend looks likely to continue this season despite Citroen cutting its works entry from four cars to two for 2016, ahead of its impending exit.

Matton said the WTCC had been valuable for Citroen, which will focus fully on the World Rally Championship from 2017, but he acknowledged that its big-budget assault had not necessarily been a good thing for the series.

Huff: Citroen exit good for WTCC

"For Citroen Racing it's a great experience," he said, when asked by Autosport about the marque's time in the WTCC.

"We learned a lot of things, a question of running the team in the discipline.

"We have a way to work and we showed that our way works not only in rallying.

"We learned a lot of things doing circuit racing. In terms of technology there's a lot of new ideas and things we will be able to use for the future in the World Rally Championship.

"We [have] pushed the championship higher; but maybe you can say that we bring a level that is too high for the championship."

Despite his praise for the WTCC, Matton added that improvements could still be made by promoter Eurosport Events.

"If I start with the positive things, it's the fact that a new manufacturer [Volvo] will enter the championship, and another manufacturer will join in 2017," he said.

"The audience is growing and the new cars bring more interest to the championship.

"The negative things are maybe the things that we always complain about: the championship calendar.

"I have some difficulties understanding why we were in Qatar and not in Macau.

"Why, from a full sea freight championship, are we moving to a half sea freight, half air freight championship?

"I'm not sure it's so easy to be promoter but it's these things that need to be really taken into account for the future."

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