Road to top almost in sight for Burns

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Richard Burns is confident he can finally complete the transformation from amateur volunteer to world beater in this weekend's Network Q Rally of Great Britain.

The 30-year-old heads to the Welsh forests knowing victory would guarantee him the world championship. "I was 15 when I 'did' my first rally," said Burns, who starts the final round in Cardiff tomorrow just two points behind his fellow Briton Colin McRae and one adrift of Finland's Tommi Makinen.

"I was co-driving and marshalling at services in the Bridgend area somewhere on the 1986 event because the guy who would become my first co-driver was a member of a motor club down there."

Burns made his championship debut in 1991 and has since become arguably Britain's most consistent driver, finishing runner-up in the championship in 1999 and last year. Now Burns is bidding for a fourth successive victory on home soil.

"I think I am the favourite, the momentum is with me," Burns said. "I've got three victories on this rally behind me, that gives me a confident feeling."