Latvala rubbishes Toyota rumours


Jari-Matti Latvala has rubbished rumours he could leave Volkswagen after the 2016 World Rally Championship season to join the returning Toyota.

The Finn has been runner-up for the past two years behind team-mate Sebastien Ogier and has five top-three finishes since 2010.

His future at Volkwagen was reportedly in doubt following the news that Toyota - led by Tommi Makinen - were to return after a long absence from the sport.

Latvala was quick to play down the speculation, though, and insisted he was committed to Volkswagen.

"At the moment, my plans are with Volkswagen," Latvala told Autosport.

"It's great that Toyota is coming back to the championship, but for 2016, '17 and '18, I'm not thinking of or considering Toyota.

"When you have the championship-winning car, it would always be very, very risky to jump out from that boat."

Latvala was speaking in Monte Carlo ahead of the opening race of the 2016 calendar and is determined to challenge Ogier more in the early races to give him a chance of the title.

He added: "In the first half of the season I have never been so successful.

"I have usually had to wait for the second half of the year for the rallies where I go well.

"So now I have to play the tactics. And the tactics are to not try to be winning every rally, sometimes I have to take the podium and wait for the second half where I am more suited."