There was no doubt that the pairing would have liked to have given the Citroen DS3 WRC a more spectacular send off. However, all weekend, the crew struggled with poor grip and an unfavourable road position. Three days earlier, the outlook for the Abu Dhabi Total World Rally Team had been much brighter. In dry and mild conditions, Meeke and countryman Craig Breen featured at the sharp end of the shakedown times. Breen went third quickest, whilst Meeke recorded the second fastest time. However, when the competition started on Friday proper, both drivers had days to forget.