Defending Intercontinental Rally Challenge champion Kris Meeke will go into this week's Rally Azores with a different approach, the Peugeot driver insisting he will relax and not push as hard as he has recently.
A win on the Curitiba Rally in Brazil aside, Meeke has suffered a torrid title defense so far, crashing and suffering mechanical problems aboard the Peugeot UK 207 S2000 he used to win last season's title. In an effort to get his title defense back on track, Meeke says he will change his approach.
"We've really, really pushed our neck out on the last couple of events to try to get ourselves back into the hunt for the championship," said Meeke. "It hasn't worked out and it's quite evident we're on the limit and beyond from the start. We really have to look at our approach a bit, come back and keep it within our own limits.
"We've tried to fight at the front but it's proving to be a bit difficult. We just have to come back, relax a little bit. Maybe, if it happens that way, the wins might come to us without us having to go and chase them. In the last couple of events we went chasing the victories we need for the championship but it hasn't worked.
"I won't go out and settle for a position, but we have to go and get the maximum out of our package without overstepping the limit. I think that's more the secret, not necessarily go out and chase the result. We just need to blank out the opposition and achieve our maximum. For sure the problems on the last couple of events have been caused by trying to extract too much."
Going into the Rally Azores – an event he won last year – Meeke is 27 points adrift of leader, Skoda driver Juho Hanninen. The seventh round of the series starts this evening.