M-Sport Stobart driver P-G Andersson has downplayed his second World Rally Championship outing of the season, stating that he's only looking to get close to the top five on next week's Rally d'Italia.
Andersson led this year's WRC opener, his home event in Sweden, before crashing and dropping more time with a puncture. On his gravel debut in the Fiesta, he has warned spectators that he will be taking a more considered approach to the event.
"It's not going to be easy next week – we're straight into the Fiesta RS WRC at shakedown without any test," Andersson said. "I hope to match the times of the other drivers but they've had a lot more experience on gravel than we've had so it's going to be very tough.
"We managed to get a good feeling straightaway in Sweden and then we had our problem on Friday, but we still managed to set fastest stage times. I just hope to have a clear run, be one of the best privateers and get as close to the top five as I can."
Russian driver Evgeny Novikov is another Fiesta driver making his second appearance of the season. Novikov crashed out of Rally Mexico and has his sight set firmly on the finish. The 20-year-old does, however, have good memories of the Olbia-based event, having finished fifth there while driving for the Citroen Junior Team in 2009.
"Next week will be my second time in Italy and it will also be my second event this season," said Novikov. "Truthfully, I have no expectations about this rally. It's not a new event for me as I was driving these stages in 2009 and, although I had a good result last time, I do not want to be making predictions about where I will finish right now. It has been quite a long time since Rally Mexico now but Stephane [Prevot] and I will polish our pace notes and I'm looking forward to gaining more experience on world events."