Sebastian Ogier believes this weekend's Rally of Portugal will be the truest test yet of Volkswagen's 2013 World Rally Championship credentials.
The Frenchman had played down his scintillating early form, insisting that his second place in Monte Carlo and victory in Sweden would only be significant if VW could also win on gravel.
After proving that in emphatic fashion in Mexico, Ogier says Portugal will be a significant barometer of VW's potential over the rest of the season.
"We saw at the Rally Mexico that the Polo R WRC is also competitive on gravel, and that is important," he said. "The coming rally in Portugal is another good indication of where we stand, and will be particularly interesting because those will be the kind of conditions we will come up against most often in the WRC: hard gravel and stages not much above sea level. I am confident that we will follow on from our excellent recent performances in Portugal."
Ogier, winner in Portugal in 2010 and '11, added that he has fully recovered from the illness which forced him to withdraw from Portugal's traditional curtain raiser, the Fafe Rallysprint, last week.
"I'm feeling much better now, after illness left me feeling below par last week," he affirmed.
"Withdrawing from the Fafe Rally Sprint was a very tough decision, especially given all the enthusiastic fans. However, it was the right decision in order to allow me to recover fully."