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Rallye Sweden, Rally, WRC, Day Two 13.02.2015

Mads Østberg and Jonas Andersson ended day one of Rally Sweden third position and right in the mix for overall victory!
With the Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team’s DS 3 WRC, the Norwegian and the Swede were consistently among the quickest on the first ten stages of the rally, held on either side of the border with Norway.
Kris Meeke and Paul Nagle lost close to three minutes after hitting a snow bank in the afternoon.

RALLY SWEDEN (12-15/02/2015) – DAY 1

13 February 2015

Over the last few weeks, the weather had looked like it would provide perfect conditions for Rally Sweden. However, an expected mild spell changed the nature of the stages yesterday morning.

The warmer temperatures meant less snow and more humidity, and it was widely felt that it would be increasingly advantageous to be one of the early starters on the stages. On SS1, held on Thursday night as a curtain raiser to the event, this theory was confirmed. Pontus Tidemand, competing in the WRC2 category, took full advantage of his starting position to win the stage, beating all of the WRCs!

This morning, the thin layer of ice covering the roads at sunrise was gradually chipped away as crews completed the stages, leaving patches of gravel exposed on the racing line. Mads Østberg attempted to keep pace with his main rivals by setting a series of top-four times. Running eighth, Kris Meeke had to contend with even less consistent conditions. Sixth after SS6, he lost almost three minutes when he got stuck in a snow bank in this afternoon’s second loop.

After finishing second on SS7, Mads Østberg continued to fight at the front. Despite almost running into trouble as he avoided a spectator on SS8, he ended the day on the provisional podium, just three tenths shy of second place.

In the RC2 class, Stéphane Lefebvre ended the opening leg in fifth position in his DS 3 R5. On his first appearance in Sweden, the talented French youngster continued his learning experience. Equally in a DS 3 R5, Robin Friberg and Thomas Thunstrom also ended day one in the top 10. In a DS 3 R3-MAX, Ole-Christian Veiby leads the FIA WRC3 Championship.

Tomorrow’s leg features eight timed stages, contested over a total of 134.82 kilometres. An early start awaits the crews – Parc Ferme opens at 6.05am, with service periods in Hagfors at 11.28am and 4.51pm. The running order will be the same as today.


Mads Østberg: “We had a good rhythm this morning, but we expected to see the early starters set very good times. This afternoon, we managed to claw back a few seconds in the first few stages. Then there was an incident on a high-speed section on SS8, with a spectator walking on the racing line. It cost us something like ten seconds. Every year, I lose some ground on the Norwegian stages. Usually, I’m quicker from the Saturday onwards. We’re only 19 seconds behind the leaders, so we’re going to push!”

Kris Meeke: “The temperatures are creeping up and the snow banks are less hard. If you hit them at the wrong angle, you can get end up getting stuck. Today, it happened to others and to us as well. On SS7, we lost around three minutes. My aim is to avoid making any mistakes, but this rally is really tough. Fortunately, we picked up the pace again quickly and I felt good again in the DS 3 WRC at the end of the day.”


SS1 – Super Special Stage Karlstad 1 (1.90km) – The crews began the rally at night as they battled it out in head-to-head races on the Karlstad racecourse. As the WRC2 drivers went before those of the WRC, they enjoyed better conditions. The Swede Pontus Tidemand took advantage to set the top time in an ‘R5’, ahead of Mads Østberg’s DS 3 WRC. Kris Meeke finished thirteenth, only 2.6 seconds off the pace.

SS2 – Torsby 1 (14.76km) – Overnight temperatures just below zero provided the early starters with a thin layer of ice. Sébastien Ogier went fastest to grab the overall lead. Third and fourth fastest on the stage, Kris Meeke and Mads Østberg established themselves among the frontrunners.

SS3 – Röjden 1 (18.73km) – This stage started and ended in Sweden, but a large part of it was contested in Norway. Negotiating the tall snow banks most effectively, Sébastien Ogier won the stage to extend his overall lead. Mads Østberg grabbed the third fastest time, whilst Kris Meeke was fourth.

SS4 – Finnskogen 1 (20.76km) – This was the first stage to be contested exclusively in Norway. Jari-Matti Latvala went quickest, whilst Mads Østberg finished fourth. A minor error led to a spin for Kris Meeke, who dropped around twenty second as a result.

SS5 – Kirkenaer 1 (7.07km) – One of the most technical stages of the rally was won by Sébastien Ogier. Mads Østberg claimed the third fastest time to move closer to third place. Sixth overall, Kris Meeke consolidated his position.

SS6 – Kirkenaer 2 (7.07km) – After change of tyres but no service, the morning’s stages were run again, this time in reverse order. Increasingly fast as more crews came through the stage, the conditions helped the Ukrainian Yurii Protasov to claim his first stage win in the WRC. Kris Meeke finished sixth and Mads Østberg was seventh to hold position.

SS7 – Finnskogen 2 (20.76km) – Kris Meeke got stuck in a snow bank, losing almost three minutes. Mads Østberg almost claimed a stage win, finishing just 1.1 seconds behind Latvala.

SS8 – Röjden 2 (18.73km) – Whilst looking like he might have the pace to win the stage, Mads Østberg was distracted by one of the spectators towards the end of the test. The Norwegian lost around ten seconds as a result. Having dropped down to 19th overall after SS7, Kris Meeke began his fightback, claiming the second fastest time behind Mikkelsen.

SS9 – Torsby 2 (14.76km) – Before the crews headed back to Hagfors, the leaderboard was shaken up. Whilst Ogier hit a snow bank and dropped around thirty seconds, Latvala went off and lost over eight minutes… Thierry Neuville won the stage to move up into second place behind the new rally leader, Andreas Mikkelsen. Mads Østberg moved back up into third, ahead of Ogier. Kris Meeke was already up to twelfth overall.

SS10 – Super Special Stage Karlstad 2 (1.90km) – The second pass on the super special stage, held on the Karlstad racecourse. Mads Østberg and Kris Meeke won their head-to-head battles against Andreas Mikkelsen and Martin Prokop respectively. The stage win went to Ogier, just ahead of Østberg, with Meeke fifth.


1. Andreas Mikkelsen / Ola Floene (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) 1:14:03.6
2. Thierry Neuville / Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC) +19.1
3. Mads Østberg / Jonas Andersson (Citroën DS3 WRC) +19.4
4. Sébastien Ogier / Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) +24.7
5. Ott Tanak / Raigo Molder (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) +1:06.2
6. Hayden Paddon / John Kennard (Hyundai i20 WRC) +1:37.1
7. Martin Prokop / Jan Tomanek (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) +2:00.5
8. Yurii Protasov / Pavlo Cherepin (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) +2:11.4
9. Henning Solberg / Ilka Minor (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) +2:18.2
10. Elfyn Evans / Daniel Barritt (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) +2:49.6…
12. Kris Meeke / Paul Nagle (Citroën DS3 WRC) +3:31.3…


Sébastien Ogier, 4 – Jari-Matti Latvala, 2 – Pontus Tidemand, Yurii Protasov, Andreas Mikkelsen and Thierry Neuville, 1.


SS1: Pontus Tidemand

SS2 to SS8: Sébastien Ogier

SS9 and SS10: Andreas Mikkelsen











Marie-Pierre Rossi
Media Citroën & DS Abu Dhabi Total World Rally Team

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Media & Comunication Astra Racing WRC Team
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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 15 años




This post is also available in: English (Inglés) Deutsch (Alemán) Español




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
Media & Comunication
Faw-Volkswagen Rally Team

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Rally Report Magazine Argentina

Ben Sayer
Media Prodrive Motorsport

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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 15 años




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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.


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”.


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








Cécile Estenave
Peugeot Sport France

Admin and Translation:

Media & Comunication TGS Worldwide
Media Toni Gardemeister Driving Academy

Rally Report Magazine Argentina
Comunity Manager 

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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 15 años




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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

Admin and Translation:

Media & Comunication TGS Worldwide
Media Toni Gardemeister Driving Academy

Rally Report Magazine Argentina
Comunity Manager

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