Kris Meeke finishes second behind Sebastian Ogier at Wales Rally GB

Kris Meeke and co driver Paul Nagle in their Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT on Brenig, Special Stage 19 during day four of the Wales Rally GB
Kris Meeke and co driver Paul Nagle in their Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT on Brenig, Special Stage 19 during day four of the Wales Rally GB

Kris Meeke finished second on Wales Rally GB, the final round of the 2015 FIA World Rally Championship and along with his Citroen teammate Mads Ostberg claimed second in the Manufacturers Championship.

Meeke’s mission in the final round along with Ostberg was to secure that second place in the race for the Manufactuers title, the top place already having been secured by Volkswagen.

The temptation for the Dungannon driver must have been to challenge winner Sebastien Ogier, but he always kept in mind that the overall Drivers title was a lost cause and more important was to finish well for his team.

Meeke’s result in Wales could prove to be a strong bargaining tool as he bids to remain in the World Rally Championship in 2016.

It is no secret that he has been in touch with Hyundai, but it is widely reported that he would like to remain with Citroen.

“My future’s not secure yet but I hope this goes some way to try to secure that,” said Meeke.

“I hope things will come clearer in the next week or so.”

Ogier’s performance rounded off a magnificent year as he took win number eight, but here was no celebration at the finish, instead the top drivers Ogier, Meeke and Andreas Mikkelsen stood in silence draped by a French tricolour in remembrance of the shootings and bombings in Paris.

The Volkswagen Polo R driver beat Meeke - recording the best finish in a home event by a Briton in 15 years - in his Citroen DS 3 by 26 seconds with Norway’s Andreas Mikkelsen third in another Polo R.

“We’re happy to finish the season like that from a sporting view, but my mind wasn’t really there this weekend,” said Ogier.

“It was hard to carry on after the tragedy in France and our thoughts were with the people.

“We wanted this victory as our small sign for those who have been touched, and to show we must be even stronger against these things

The final day in Wales belonged with Jar-Matti Latvala who had re-entered the event courtesy of Rally 2 rules and he won all four of the remaining special stages at the wheel of his works Volkswagen Polo.

n The Motor Sports Association in conjunction with the Association of Northern Ireland Car Clubs is holding RallyFuture Forum Northern Ireland on Thursday November 19 at the Millbrook Lodge Hotel, Ballynahinch commencing at 7.30pm.

The aim is to discuss the future of special stage rallying safety and the future of the sport n the UK.

Among the principal guests will be Citroen works driver Kris Meeke, fresh from his positive performance in Wales.