Rally veteran issues a stern warning to younger competitors ahead of the Rally de Portugal

Kris Meeke is set to test his speed in the World Rally Championship next week.
Kris Meeke
Kris Meeke. Photo by: Hyundai Motorsport
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Meeke, 44, holds five World Rally Championship event victories. The Northern Irishman withdrew from the championship after the 2019 season, but he has not yet ended his active career.

Since last year, Meeke has been competing regularly in the Portuguese Rally Championship. This season, he has been impeccable, winning all three rounds for Team Hyundai Portugal.

In last weekend’s Rali Terras d’Aboboreira, Meeke faced serious competition as several drivers familiar from the WRC2 class used the rally as a test event before the upcoming Rally de Portugal. However, Meeke issued a stern warning to the younger drivers and clinched the rally victory.

Competing in a Hyundai i20 N Rally2, the veteran rally driver left behind the French duo Pierre-Louis Loubet and Yohan Rossel, as well as Citroën driver Nikolay Gryazin.

“We had an update on the engine this weekend, and it seemed to work quite well. I have to say I’m really happy,” Meeke smiled.

The former WRC star was particularly warmed by the fact that the current WRC2 stars ultimately posed no challenge.

“But also when these young guys from WRC2 come, it’s nice to still have some fight in them. I’m not a young kid anymore, but I feel like a kid when I’m driving,” Meeke quipped.

Meeke’s race effort began dramatically when he rolled his car during the shakedown. However, the Hyundai was patched up in time for the race, so Meeke could only offer praise to his team.

“We made a mess of the car, but the guys, honestly, worked their hearts out to put the car back on the road. The Hyundai Portugal team gives me full support to continue to push. And this is the spirit I like: a family-like team with the right attitude towards motorsport,” Meeke appreciated.

Next week at the Rally de Portugal, Meeke is expected to face even stiffer competition. Alongside Loubet and Rossel, the WRC2 event will feature drivers such as Oliver Solberg, Gus Greensmith, Pepe Lopez, Sami Pajari, and Teemu Suninen.

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