Kris Meeke

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2015 World Rally Championship

Full calendar (subject to change)

12 January 2014

Kris is contesting the full World Rally Championship with Abu Dhabi Citroen Total World Rally Team in 2015. Here’s the full calendar.

We’ll add more information on the events – and any planning outings beyond the WRC – as soon as we get the details.

Round 1: Rallye Monte Carlo: 22-25 January

Round 2: Rally Sweden: 12-15 February

Round 3: Rally Guanajuato Mexico: 5-8 March

Round 4: Philips LED Rally Argentina: 23-26 April

Round 5: Vodafone Rally de Portugal: 21-24 May

Round 6: Rally Italia Sardegna: 11-14 June

Round 7: Lotos Rally Poland: 2-5 July

Round 8: Neste Oil Rally Finland: 30 July – 2 August

Round 9: ADAC Rallye Deutschland: 20-23 August

Round 10: Coates Hire Rally Australia: 10-13 September

Round 11: Rallye de France: 1-4 October

Round 12: RallyRACC-Rally de Espana: 22-25 October

Round 13: Wales Rally GB: 12-15 November

Please note that all dates are subject to change.

Rallye Monte Carlo - Thursday, 22 January 2015

Rallye Monte Carlo - pic by Citroen Racing
Dates: 22-25 January
Surface: icy, snowy asphalt
Kris’s best result: 3rd (2014, Citroen DS3 WRC)

The most famous name in the calendar, the season-opening Rallye Monte Carlo is the one all the drivers want to win – and also one of the toughest rounds of the year, with notoriously unpredictable conditions and, quite often, a lottery on tyre choice.

The event has its start and finish in the Principality, but the real action takes place in on the mountain roads of southern France. In January that means a mixture of bone-dry asphalt, icy roads and occasional deep snow (it’s also not uncommon for the fans to add to the blend by throwing the white stuff onto the road).

Guessing the correct tyres for any stage of the Monte can mean the difference between victory and abject failure – and few other events demand such patience from the world’s top drivers, as they often have to slither over a few kilometres of ice on dry racing tyres, knowing that they’ll make up time once conditions improve.

Kris’s experience of this event

Kris has tackled the Rallye Monte Carlo on six occasions. He scored 12th in the Junior WRC on his Monte debut in 2003, then took third in the category in 2004. His won the JWRC class honours and claimed a fine 11th overall in 2005.

Prior to last year, Kris’s four-wheel-drive experience extended to a pair of appearances in a Peugeot 207 S2000 – but those outings, in 2009 and 2010, both resulted in retirement. However, a mature drive on his Citroen DS3 Monte debut in 2014 brought an excellent third overall.

Rally Sweden - Thursday, 12 February 2015

Rally Sweden - pic by Citroen Racing
Dates: 12-15 February
Surface: snow, ice
Kris’s best result: 10th (2014, Citroen DS3 WRC)

The second round of the season, Rally Sweden, is the World Rally Championship’s only ‘true’ winter event. For while Rallye Monte Carlo could quite happily run on bone-dry tarmac, Rally Sweden relies on ice-cold conditions, a good, thick layer of ice and, preferably, deep enough snow drifts to allow the stuff to build up beside the roads.

The resulting white walls are a gift to aggressive rally drivers, as they ‘over-commit’ to corners, safe in the knowledge that the snow banks will bounce the rear of the car back onto the road and maintain their momentum. However, the penalties for getting it wrong can be severe indeed; more than a few Rally Sweden bids have ended with the front of a rally car embedded in deep snow.

Again, tyre management is crucial. In recent years, slightly warmer conditions have forced drivers to play a waiting game on stretches of road with gravel poking through the ice, hoping to keep enough of their rubber’s studs in place to be of use once they get back onto the snow.

Kris’s experience of this event

Kris concentrated on gaining experience on last year’s Rally Sweden, because he had never tackled the tricky event before. He was still on course for a top-six finish, though – until a late excursion into a snow bank dropped him to 10th.

Rally Guanajuato Mexico - Thursday, 5 March 2015

Rally Mexico - pic by Citroen Racing
5-8 March
Surface: gravel
Kris’s best result: n/a

The World Rally Championship has included a round in Mexico since 2004 – and the Citroen team has a great record on the event. Indeed, Sebastien Loeb score an unprecedented six wins in a row on the rally between 2006 and 2012 at the wheel of a Xsara, then a C4, then a DS3.

Rally Mexico’s stages present a unique challenge to the drivers – and also to the engineers. They’re often held at altitudes of up to 2700 metres, where turbocharged engines can lose up to a fifth of their power. As a result, the teams work hard on electronic maps for the engine that help it to cope with the thinner atmosphere.

The event continues to be based in Leon, although the ceremonial start – and a spectacular opening test through cobbled streets – are held in the nearby city of Guanajuato.

Kris’s experience of this event

Mexico was another of the events new to Kris in 2014, and again, he focused on building experience and checking his pacenotes. He was in line to score a couple of WRC points for ninth place, but suspension damage in the final stage rendered his DS3 undriveable and forced him to retire.