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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 15 años

FIA WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP 2015: VOLKSWAGEN RED BULL MOTORSPORT-#WINTERTHUNDERLAND – VOLKSWAGEN CARRYNG MOMENTUM INTO RALLY SWEDEN

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WRC A FULL 2015

#WinterThunderland – Volkswagen carrying momentum into Rally Sweden.

VSWWE15

Ice and snow – Rally Sweden an anomaly on the WRC calendar
Volkswagen duos first, second and third in the World Championship standings
One rally, two countries: route takes in new territory in Norway and familiar ground in Sweden

6 February 2015

Paradise for fans of the perfect drift: when Volkswagen lines up at the Rally Sweden, it will do so at the only rally of the season to be held completely on ice and snow. Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F), Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN) and Andreas Mikkelsen/Ola Fløene (N/N) come into round two of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) with the wind in their sails. The three Volkswagen duos arrive in the recently-covered host region of Värmland on the back of a historic one-two-three for the Polo R WRC at the recent Rally Monte Carlo. As first, second and third in the overall standings, they now have the honour of opening the route. All three can look back proudly on their past records at the Rally Sweden: Ogier/Ingrassia are the only Central European pairing, besides record champions Sébastien Loeb/Daniel Elena, ever to have won in Sweden – in 2013 with the Polo R WRC. This also marked Volkswagen’s first success in the WRC. For Latvala/Anttila, Sweden represents the only round of the WRC, at which they have already tasted victory on three occasions – their maiden success in the World Rally Championship in 2008, 2012 and most recently in 2014 with Volkswagen. Andreas Mikkelsen finished runner-up at the 2014 Rally Sweden to claim his very first podium result at the pinnacle of rallying.

“We have nothing but fond memories of the Rally Sweden and travel there with great anticipation every year,” said Volkswagen Motorsport Director Jost Capito. “You never forget the rally, at which you claimed your very first win as a team. Back in 2013 it was one of our highlights in the World Rally Championship with the Polo R WRC. Last year we witnessed some thrilling, all-Volkswagen battles for the victory and it was the first time all three of our drivers showed themselves to be on a par and capable of winning – including our ‘junior’, Andreas Mikkelsen, who more than held his own against Sébastien Ogier and Jari-Matti Latvala. However, all that is history and will once again be going all out to taste success again in 2015. We are undefeated at the Rally Sweden, and would love it to stay that way.”

Power and slides – dream conditions in the forests of Värmland

Welcome to Winter Thunderland: few rallies are as popular with the Volkswagen drivers as the Rally Sweden. The special Sweden spikes on the narrow Michelin tyres generate greater grip on the ice and snow than the crews are used to experiencing on gravel. Will it be a tyre lottery like the one seen at the Rally Monte Carlo then? No chance. The only option is this one specific type of tyre. The conditions are usually very consistent, giving the drivers plenty of confidence in the grip levels. Jari-Matti Latvala and Andreas Mikkelsen are right at home on this kind of terrain. The best news ahead of this year’s Rally Sweden is the weather forecast: heavy snowfall shortly before the Rally Sweden has created dream conditions in the forests of Värmland.

6.5 millimetres for maximum grip: Sweden spikes are a drifter’s best friend

They are the link between the World Rally Cars and the icy, snow-covered rally roads: the new Michelin X-Ice North 3 tyres, which are used exclusively in Sweden. In other words: Sweden spikes, developed from scratch for 2015. They are narrower than their asphalt and gravel counterparts. However, the most important feature protrudes 6.5 millimetres from the tread – the 380 spikes that literally bite into the snow and ice. Not only are they capable of withstanding temperatures as low as minus 25 degrees, but also extremely high speeds. The Rally Sweden is one of the rounds of the World Championship, at which the average speed exceeds the 100 km/h mark. In 2014, the “Rämmen” special stage was the fastest section of the rally, with competitors averaging 117.69 km/h. The drivers return to this stage on the Saturday of this year’s rally, where it forms special stages 12 and 16.

Foray into Norway means a home outing for Andreas Mikkelsen

The 2014 Rally Sweden was the event that emphatically confirmed his arrival amongst the top drivers in the World Rally Championship: Andreas Mikkelsen has high hopes going into his home event, and can count on the passionate support of his fans. Friday’s route heads out of the Värmland region at rally tempo and over the border into Norway – the home of the 25-year-old Volkswagen driver. Once there, the WRC aces will largely be entering uncharted waters: the “Röjden” special sage, which takes the drivers into Norway, was driven in the opposite direction the last time it featured on the itinerary in 2011. As such, it is basically a new stage for the drivers and co-drivers. “Finnskogen” is also classed as a new stage: only certain sections of last year’s special stage of the same name are to be tackled this year, and in the opposite direction. Only “Kirkenær”, which is also held over the border and represents the largest fan arena in the World Rally Championship, with snow piled into huge walls and thousands of spectators, is almost identical to last year.

The route in Sweden, on the other hand, is tried and tested: the stages on Saturday and Sunday are virtually unchanged from last year. And why change them? “Fredriksberg”, “Rämmen”, “Hagfors Sprint”, “Lesjöfors” and “Värmullsåsen” are genuine classics and form the backbone of the Rally Sweden. However, one stage always stands out from the rest: it is hard to imagine the Rally Sweden without “Vargåsen”, which features the infamous “Colin’s Crest”. The best jumps here are rewarded with the “Colin’s Crest Award” – the trophy named after the ever-courageous Colin McRae. Record holder since 2014: world champion Sébastien Ogier with a distance of 41 metres.

Quotes ahead of the Rally Sweden

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“As with any rally, the winner come the end of the Rally Sweden will be the person who drove fastest, whilst at the same time making the fewest mistakes. Despite this, it is always very special for me to drive in Sweden. No other round of the WRC is held entirely on ice and snow, and I love that. It looks as though we are going to have very good conditions this year. There is a lot of snow on the ground in Sweden, and the cold temperatures in Scandinavia have transformed many sections of the route into skating rinks. I am looking forward to it, and to a fast rally. The only thing that could possibly ruin my fun a little would be fresh snow. That would be a slight disadvantage for the first drivers on the route. All the same, I head to Sweden full of optimism, as the win at the Rally Monte Carlo has given me even more motivation. You could say that the conditions at the Rally Sweden are actually far more predictable than the ‘Monte’, and they will definitely not be as demanding for us drivers.”

Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“I learned to drive rally cars on snow and ice. Even as a kid I used to bomb across frozen lakes, so I feel right at home at the Rally Sweden. Early on in my career, the Rally Sweden was actually my very favourite rally, but I now feel comfortable on any surface. With the old Polo R WRC, I always had slight understeer on snow. However, tests show that our new Polo R WRC has improved in this regard. I am particularly looking forward to the ‘Frederiksberg’ and ‘Vargåsen’ stages in Sweden, because you can find a good rhythm on them and these two stages feature some big jumps. The second place at the Rally Monte Carlo also gives me cause for optimism. That was better than I expected. Should I win in Sweden, it would underline my title aspirations. Despite this, I am well aware that, as well as Sébastien, Andreas and the likes of Mads Østberg will also be in contention for the win. You always have to reckon on those guys here.”

Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“I associate a lot of positives with the Rally Sweden. Last year I finished on the podium for the first time there. The main features of the Rally Sweden are the fast special stages lined by snowbanks on the roadside. If you find the right snowbanks, which you can lean on, you can gain a lot of time and find yourself up there with the front-runners. If you get it wrong and hit a snowbank that is too soft, your rally can be over just as quickly. I start third on the first couple of days, and the first drivers out will have a disadvantage if there is a lot of snow on the route. As such, I hope the roads are icy, rather than covered in snow. Should that not be the case, I will be aiming for a top-five finish. At the moment, people keep asking me whether I can win with last year’s Polo R WRC. I am convinced that I can and, given the right conditions, the prospect of a maiden win is entirely realistic.”

Three questions for race engineer Richard Browne

The Rally Sweden is seen as the WRC round, at which Andreas Mikkelsen has the best chance of winning his first rally. You are his race engineer. How have you both prepared for the big opportunity?
Richard Browne: “I am sure that many people think that this could be the big rally for Andreas and Ola. However, first and foremost, we must not forget that third place at the ‘Monte’ also means he is third onto the route – and, given the amount of snowfall in Värmland in recent weeks, the early starting position could be an advantage for all those behind him. It will be anything but a stroll in the park. As far as the preparations themselves are concerned, it has been ‘business as usual’ really. Immediately after the Rally Monte Carlo, we started to discuss the initial set-up variants for the test ahead of the Rally Sweden. We also watched and analysed the 2014 Rally Sweden in great depth.”

From an engineer’s point of view, what makes Andreas Mikkelsen so strong at the Rally Sweden?
Richard Browne: “Because he comes from Norway, driving on ice and snow comes completely naturally to Andreas. You can put him in a World Rally car with a snow and ice set-up at any time and he is just quick from the first second. In the meantime, however, he has become an all-rounder. Last year, Andreas claimed five podiums and held his own against Sébastien Ogier, Jari-Matti Latvala and the others on each occasion. Three of his podiums were second places – one on gravel, one on ice and snow, and one on asphalt. He is quick on every surface.”

His own expectations, and those of his fans and friends, are immense. As an engineer, what can you and the driver do to ensure he is able to handle these expectations?
Richard Browne: “Andreas has been a regular at the top of the standings since the middle of last year, and he coped well with the pressure and expectations that come with that success. With Volkswagen Motorsport, he has matured into a confident and determined driver over the past two years. During the rally, as soon as one stage is over we immediately start thinking about the next one, working on the tyre strategy, and making the necessary changes to the set-up of the car. We are always looking ahead. There is just one slight difference: we do our analysis on the phone during the liaison stages. By the time Andreas arrives in the media zone, he is in far greater demand among the media at the Rally Sweden than anywhere else.”

The number for the Rally Sweden: 33.2 per cent

In total, 102.38 of the 308.00 kilometres against the clock at this year’s Rally Sweden are new – that is roughly a third (33.2 per cent). They all feature on the itinerary for the Friday of the rally. In Norway, the “Kirkenær” stadium stage is the only special stage that was driven in 2014. In Sweden, on the other hand, 11.7 kilometres of “Torsby” are new, while 3.06 kilometres will be familiar to the drivers from last year. The routes of all the other special stages are identical – particularly those on Saturday and Sunday.

FIA World Rally Championship (WRC),
Rally  Sweden– TV broadcast

Western Europe
Andorra (Canal +); Austria (ORF, Servus TV, Sport1, N-TV, LAOLA1.tv); Belgium (Canal +, RTBF); Denmark (Viasat); Europe (MOTORS TV); Finland (YLE, Nelonen); France (Canal +, France TV, Léquipe 21); Germany (Sport1, N-TV, Servus TV, LAOLA1.tv, Sky); Greece (OTE); Italy (RAI, Fox Sports, Dinamica); Ireland (BT Sport); Lichtenstein (N-TV, Sport1, Servus TV); Luxembourg (Canal +, N-TV, Servus TV, Sport1); Israel (Charlton); Monaco (Canal +, France TV, Léquipe 21); Netherlands (RTL7); Norway (VIASAT); Portugal (Sport TV, RTP); Slovakia (Sport 5); Spain (Canal +, TVE, TV3); Sweden (SVT); Switzerland (Canal +, N-TV, Sport1, Servus TV); Turkey (NTV); UK (BT Sport, itv4); Wales (S4C)

Eastern Europe
Armenia, Azerbaijan, Belarus, Estonia, Georgia, Kazakhstan, Kyrgyzstan, Latvia, Moldova, Russia, Tajikistan, Turkmenistan, Uzbekistan (Auto Plus); Bosnia and Herzigovina, Croatia, Kosovo, Macedonia, Montenegro, Serbia, Slovenia (Arena TV); Czech Republic (Czech TV, Sport 5); Hungary (Sport1); Lithuania (Auto Plus, BTV, LNK); Poland (TVP); Romania (Dolce Sport); Ukraine (First Automotive Channel, Auto Plus)

Middle East and Africa
Angola, Cap Verde, Mozambique (Canal +, Sport TV, SuperSport); Benin, Botswana, Burkina Faso, Burundi, Cameroon, Equatorial Guinea, Gabon, Gambia, Guinea, Guinea-Bissau, Ivory Coast, Kenya, Madagascar, Malawi, Mali, Mauritius, Namibia, Niger, Nigeria, São Tomé, Senegal, Sierra Leone, Tanzania, Togo, Uganda, Zambia, Zimbabwe (Canal +, SuperSport); Ethopia, Mauritania, Seychelles (Canal +); Lesotho, Liberia, Mayotte, Reunion, Socotra, Somalia, South Africa, South Sudan, St Helena & Ascension, Sudan, Swaziland (SuperSport)

Asia Pacific
Australia (Fox Sports); American Samoa, Baker Island, Guam, Howland Islands, Jarvis Island, Kingman Reef, Micronesia, Midway Islands, Navassa Island, Norther Marianas, Palau, U.S. Virgin Islands, Wake Islands (MAV TV); China (PPTV); Indonesia (MNC); Japan (J Sports); Malaysia (Astro); New Zealand (Sky Sports, TV 3); Thailand (Truevision)

North and Latin America
Argentina, Uruguay (Channel 12, Fox Sports); Bahamas, Barbados, Belize, Haiti, Jamaica, Puerto Rico, Trinidad & Tobago (MAV TV); Bolivia, Brazil, Chile, Columbia, Costa Rica, Cuba, Dominican Republic, Ecuador, El Salvador, Guatemala, Honduras, Nicaragua, Panama, Peru, Venezuela (Fox Sports); Mexico (Fox Sports, TV4); Paraguay (Fox Sports, Telefuturo), USA (MAV TV, Fox Sports)

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Andre Dietzel
Media Volkswagen Red Bull Motorsport

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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 15 años

CHINESE RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP (CRC 2015): PRODRIVE MOTORSPORT – ATKINSON WINS AGAIN IN CHINA VW GOLF 7 SCRC

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CRC A FULL 2015

ATKINSON WINS AGAIN IN CHINA WITH VW GOLF 7 SCRC.

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30 September 2015

Chris Atkinson has won the latest round of the Chinese Rally Championship in the VW Golf SCRC. Atkinson won comfortably by a minute and 40 seconds from Mark Higgins in the Subaru and Manfred Stohl in a Citroen DS3.

Chen Dean in the second Golf was fifth with Li ninth in the third car.

That makes it three wins from four events for Atkinson as the Championship heads to the next round Longyou at the end of October. Longyou was the debut event for the VW Golf SCRC last year when Atkinson to its maiden win.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cedric Journel / Dongwei Zhang
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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 15 años

DAKAR RALLY ARGENTINA – BOLIVIA – ARGENTINA 2016: PEUGEOT TOTAL TEAM – LA LEYENDA DEL RALLY SÉBASTIEN LOEB SE UNE AL ” DREAM TEAM” DE PEUGEOT TOTAL

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La leyenda del rally Sébastien Loeb se une al “Dream Team” de Peugeot-Total.

Sebastien Loeb poses for a portrait in Peugeot Sport workshop, France, on September 21, 2015
Sébastien Loeb, el mejor piloto de rally de todos los tiempos, se enfrentará al mayor reto de su carrera al unirse por primera vez al equipo de Peugeot en el legendario Dakar del próximo mes de enero.

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29 Septiembre 2015

El nueve veces campeón del WRC y plusmarquista del Pikes Peak se ha unido al equipo de Peugeot 2008DKR junto a Carlos Sainz para el Rally du Maroc del próximo mes (del 3 al 9 de octubre) antes de hacer frente al mayor reto de este deporte, el Dakar, durante 13 días en Argentina y Bolivia en 2016. Junto a él en Sudamérica también estarán Stéphane Peterhansel y Cyril Despres completando así el “dream team” de pilotos de Peugeot-Total.

El francés de 41 años, Sébastien Loeb, uno de los pilotos con más éxito de la historia de los deportes de motor con un porcentaje de victorias sin precedentes del 46,2% en el WRC dijo: “Descubrí los deportes de motor cuando tenía 18 años y empecé a competir en mis primeros rallys. Desde entonces me han interesado todo tipo de deportes de motor y el Dakar es uno de ellos. Creo que es un gran reto competir y conducir en el desierto”.

“El Dakar es completamente diferente a las carreras que hago en este momento. va a ser muy larga, más de dos semanas, y necesitas tener aguante para cuidar del conductor y del coche. Es una carrera con un enfoque distinto pero lo descubriré en enero”.

Hasta entonces, Loeb se unirá a Sainz en Marruecos para su debut en el competitivo Cross Country, aunque ya pilotó el rival de Peugeot a principios de año. Para Loeb ésta será una reunión muy especial pues ya fue compañero de equipo de Sainz durante su primera temporada completa en el Mundial de Rallys del 2003, hasta que el español se tuvo que retirar del WRC de 2004. En Marruecos Sainz pilotará el último Peugeot 2008DKR16 mientras que Loeb pilotará un coche con especificaciones de 2015.

“Cuando probé el PEUGEOT 2008DKR en junio me sorprendió muchísimo y por supuesto ha cambiado mucho desde entonces”, dijo Loeb -que en la actualidad está compitiendo en el Campeonato Mundial de Turismos de la FIA con Citroen.

“Lo que más me impactó fue lo diferente que es conducir el coche del Dakar, era una experiencia completamente nueva para mí. En el WRC acostumbro a rodear obstáculos pero con este coche puedes simplemente pasar por encima, ¡y cuesta tener la suficiente confianza en uno mismo para creer que puedes hacerlo!”

“ También estoy acostumbrado a tener notas de copiloto muy detalladas pero en el Cross Country tienes que abrirte paso e improvisar tu ruta. Esta, además, es la primera vez que he pilotado diferentes tipos de coche diesel en una competición por lo que tengo que aprender mucho pero tengo muchas ganas de hacerlo”.

Además de haber ganado más rallys, etapas especiales y campeonatos que cualquier otro piloto, Sébastien Loeb también se ha convertido en el “Rey del Peak” al batir el record del Pikes Peak Hillclimb con Peugeot y Red Bull hace dos años en América. Un triunfo épico que ya forma parte de la historia legendaria de los deportes de motor.

Ahora forma parte del mejor equipo que se haya enfrentado jamás al Dakar. Tal y como dijo el 11 veces campeón del Dakar Stéphane Peterhansel: “Sébastien Loeb es un referente del motor. Hay muy poco que yo o cualquier otro le pueda enseñar”.

El cinco veces campeón de motos Cyril Despres añadió: “Desde que cambié las dos ruedas por cuatro, la experiencia no ha hecho más que mejorar. Y saber que ahora Sébastien se une al equipo la remata aún más”.

El dos veces campeón del WRC y campeón del Dakar en 2010 Carlos Sainz, que será una vez más el compañero de Loeb en Marruecos dijo: “No tengo nada más que decir sobre Sébastien que no haya dicho ya. Por supuesto que el rally raid va a ser una nueva aventura para él, pero va a ser capaz de adaptarse sin problemas. Como yo mismo he podido comprobar aprende muy rápido”.

“El Dakar es algo que me llama, es una gran aventura”, añadió Loeb, quien ya dominó el Pikes Peak y el WTCC. “El rally en Marruecos me mostrará lo que es realmente el Cross Country, así que para mí esta es una oportunidad fantástica para aprender, en especial al lado de unos compañeros tan buenos”.

Tal y como pasó con sus nueve títulos mundiales y sus 78 victorias en el WRC hasta la fecha, Loeb tendrá como copiloto al campeón mundial de deportes de motor monegasco Daniel Elena. Marruecos marcará la vuelta de la pareja con más éxito jamás vista en la historia del motor que emprende una nueva aventura juntos tras 17 gloriosos años en los rallys.

Al igual que Loeb, el copiloto de 42 años Elena nunca ha competido antes en Cross Country, pero se ha preparado a fondo para las exigencias de la navegación más dura del mundo, en la que los equipos tienen que reaccionar rápidamente para conquistar el terreno offroad más sobrecogedor. Cuentan además con la ayuda de un sofisticado sistema de GPS que les guiará de punto a punto.

El director deportivo de Peugeot Bruno Famin comentó: “ Sébastien fue impresionante desde que se sentó en el coche, como ya sabíamos tras haber trabajado con él anteriormente. Adoptó ese enfoque calculado que tanto le caracteriza para entender el coche paso a paso, pero después su habilidad natural se encargó del resto. Tras mejorar diferentes aspectos del coche desde la última vez que estuvimos en el Dakar, el fichaje de Sébastien Loeb es la pieza que le faltaba al puzzle”.

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The 2008 DKR 16 in Peugeot Sport workshop, France, on September 21, 2015

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cécile Estenave
Peugeot Sport France
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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 15 años

DAKAR RALLY ARGENTINA – BOLIVIA – ARGENTINA 2016: PEUGEOT TOTAL TEAM – RALLY LEGEND SÉBASTIEN LOEB JOINS ” D-REAM TEAM PEUGEOT – TOTAL

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DAKAR A FULL 2016

Rally Legend Sébastien Loeb joins “D-ream TEAM Peugeot-Total”.

Sebastien Loeb and Daniel Elena pose for a portrait during the Peugeot test in Erfoud, Morocco on September 16, 2015

Sebastien Loeb and Daniel Elena pose for a portrait during the Peugeot test in Erfoud, Morocco on September 16, 2015

29 September 2015

Rally Legend Sébastien Loeb joins “D-ream TEAM Peugeot-Total” © Flavien Duhamel/Red Bull Content Pool

Velizy-Villacoublay, France
Tuesday, 29 September 2015

Sébastien Loeb, the greatest rally driver ever, will take on one of the biggest challenges of his illustrious career when he lines up as part of Peugeot’s dream team at the legendary Dakar in January for the first time.

The nine-time World Rally Championship winner and Pikes Peak record-holder has joined Peugeot’s 2008DKR line-up alongside Carlos Sainz for next month’s Rallye du Maroc (October 3-9) before facing the sport’s toughest challenge, the Dakar, over 13 days in Argentina and Bolivia in 2016. Joining him in South America will also be Stéphane Peterhansel and Cyril Despres, completing Team Peugeot Total’s dream team driver line-up.

The 41-year old Loeb, one of the most successful drivers in the history of motorsports, with an unprecedented 46.2% wins-to-starts ratio in WRC, said: “I only discovered motorsports when I was 18 and I started competing in my first rallies. Since then I have been interested in all types of different motorsports and Dakar is one of them. I think it’s a great challenge to go and compete there and drive in the desert.

“The Dakar is completely different from the racing I’m doing at the moment. It will be very long, over two weeks, and you need to have the endurance to look after the driver and the car. It’s another approach to racing but I’ll discover that in January.”


Before then, Loeb will line up with Sainz in Morocco next week for his competitive Cross Country debut – although he already tested Peugeot’s Dakar challenger in the country earlier this year. For Loeb, this will be a very special reunion: he was previously team-mates with Sainz for his very first full season in the World Rally Championship in 2003, until the Spaniard decided to end his WRC career at the end of 2004. In Morocco, Sainz will drive the latest PEUGEOT 2008DKR16 whereas Loeb will drive a 2015-specification car.

“When I tried the PEUGEOT 2008DKR out in June, it was immediately very impressive for me – and of course it has changed a lot since then,” said Loeb, who is currently competing in the FIA WTCC with Citroen.

“What struck me most of all is how the Dakar car was a completely new experience: in the WRC I have been used to going round obstacles but with this car you can just drive straight over them, and it takes some time to have the confidence to believe it!

“I’ve also been used to having very detailed pace notes: in Cross Country, you have to find the road for yourself and improvise your route. And this is actually the first time I have driven any type of diesel car in competition too. So there is a lot for me to learn, but I am eager to find out more.”

As well as winning more rallies, special stages and championships than any other driver, Sébastien Loeb also became ‘King of the Peak’ when he pulverised the Pikes Peak hill climb record with Peugeot and Red Bull two years ago in America: an epic feat that is already remembered as a legendary part of motorsport history.

Now he forms part of the greatest team ever to tackle the Dakar. As 11-time Dakar winner Stéphane Peterhansel said: “Sébastien Loeb is a reference in motorsport. There’s very little that I, or anybody else, can teach him.”

Five-time bike winner Cyril Despres added: “Since I made the switch from two wheels to four, the experience has got better and better. And to see Sébastien arrive in the team now, everything is complete.”

Two-time WRC champion and Dakar 2010 winner Carlos Sainz, who will be Loeb’s team-mate once more in Morocco, concluded: “There is nothing more I can say about Sébastien that his career hasn’t said already. Of course rally raid will be a new adventure for him, but he has every capacity to adapt to it with no problem. As I have seen for myself in the past, he is a quick learner in everything he does.

“Dakar is something that appeals to me; it is a huge adventure,” added Loeb, who has already mastered rallying, Pikes Peak and the World Touring Car Championship. “The rally in Morocco will give me a very interesting idea of what Cross Country is all about, so this is a fantastic opportunity for me to learn; particularly alongside such successful team-mates.”

Just as has been the case throughout his nine world titles and 78 WRC victories to date, Loeb will be co-driven by Monaco’s motorsport world champion: Daniel Elena. Morocco will mark the comeback of the most successful pairing ever seen in the history of motorsport, as they start a new adventure together following 17 magnificent years in rallying.

Like Loeb, the 42-year-old Elena has never competed in Cross Country before, but he has undergone intensive training to prepare him for the demands of some of the most challenging navigation in the world, where crews have to think instantly on their feet to conquer the daunting off-road landscape. They are aided by sophisticated GPS equipment, guiding their route from waypoint to waypoint.

Peugeot Sport director Bruno Famin commented: “Sébastien was impressive from the moment he first sat in the car, as we knew would be the case after having had the privilege of working with him before. He took his usual measured approached to understand the car step by step: from there his natural ability took over. Having improved the car in several different areas since we were last at the Dakar, the signing of Sébastien Loeb is the final piece in the puzzle.”

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Cécile Estenave
Peugeot Sport France
https://www.Peugeot-sport.com

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