M-Sport Ford team principal Richard Millener wants Gus Greensmith to be fighting for and taking podiums in the World Rally Championship this year.
Greensmith will be contesting his third full season with M-Sport in 2022, and will have Jonas Andersson alongside him in the Ford Puma Rally1 Hybrid.
The 2021 season was by far Greensmith’s most competitive in the WRC to date as he fought for stage wins and finished three rallies in the top five to come ninth in the championship standings.
But with M-Sport expected to be closer to the pace – having sacrificed development in 2021 to concentrate on the incoming hybrid Rally1 ruleset – Millener is hoping to see even more progress from Greensmith.
“I think he should be aiming for podiums, to be honest,” Millener told DirtFish in late 2021.
“It’s always that difficult transition to go from where he is up to the next step, but he’s been at the top level since 2017 now on-and-off, and consistently for the past two-and-a-bit seasons now.
“You’ve got to be looking forward to making that next bit. We know that our car has maybe not as competitive on some surfaces as the competition is this and last year because of the development we spent on 2022 instead of this year.
“So with the car we know we’ve got, there isn’t any reason why he can’t move up to the next level.”
We want to start off strong, start off consistent and then build from thereGus Greensmith
Greensmith doesn’t disagree with his team principal but doesn’t want to set too many concrete targets – aside from a maiden WRC stage win – ahead of the season either.
“The stage win, I think I missed out on the stage win this year about six times by like less than a second. So for sure that’s the first one to tick off the list and I think it’s just one of them, we’ll need to see where we are,” Greensmith said to DirtFish.
“I think we’re all going to be confident that we’ll be certainly a hell of a lot closer than this year.
“We’ll just see, that’s the thing it is hard to set targets of where we expect to be until we kind of know after the first few rallies.
“But for sure, we want to start off strong, start off consistent and then build from there.”
Greensmith will be joined at M-Sport by new signing Craig Breen and Adrien Fourmaux next season, with nine-time WRC champion Sébastien Loeb completing a part-time program that begins with the Monte Carlo Rally later this month.