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Rally Report Magazine Argentina 15 años




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Latvala and Østberg second and third; Neuville loses second place in SS8

· Ukrainian Protasov holds slender WRC2 lead over Qatar’s Al-Attiyah

· Tanak and Molder survive dramatic third stage plunge into reservoir

· Paddon damages suspension and retires; Meeke and Kubica crash out

6 March 2015

LEÓN (Mexico): The French duo of Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia survived a dramatic opening leg of the 12th Rally Guanajuato Corona and overcame the disadvantage of running first on the road to move into a 13.5-second lead after 10 special stages of the third round of the FIIA World Rally Championship.

In an incident-filled day, where spectacular crashes and a high rate of attrition amongst the leading cars stole the headlines, the defending World Champions were the models of consistency in the lead Volkswagen Polo R WRC.

When Ogier’s closest challenger, Thierry Neuville of Belgium, sustained a puncture and rolled his Hyundai i20 WRC out of second place in SS8, Ogier cruised to the end of the leg ahead of Volkswagen team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala. The Finn, meanwhile, survived a frightening moment of his own on the final super special stage.

“Quite amazing to have the lead after starting first on the road this morning,” said Ogier. “This has been very hard and we had to push from the first minute to the end. But I am very pleased with this and no road cleaning for me tomorrow.”

Norway’s Mads Østberg refused to let Andreas Mikkelsen through into third place to make it a Volkswagen 1-2-3 and the Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team driver overcame gearbox issues and reached the overnight halt in the final podium place. “It got better as the day went on. We are focusing on trying to enjoy it,” said Mads.

Behind Mikkelsen, Welshman Elfyn Evans was fifth in an M-Sport Ford Fiesta and Dani Sordo was a distant sixth in the sole-surviving works Hyundai.

The ever-improving Ukrainian Yuriy Protasov fended off an increasingly intense challenge from Qatar’s Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah to hold a 14.5-second advantage in WRC2. “It has been a good day for us but it is a big battle with Nasser,” said Protasov.

M-Sport World Rally Team’s Ott Tanak and Raigo Molder were fortunate to survive a dramatic third stage plunge into a reservoir next to the track. Their Ford Fiesta rolled down the banking into the water and the Estonian duo managed to escape before the car sunk out of sight. It was retrieved from its watery grave late on Friday afternoon.

“It was a difficult experience for us,” said Tanak. “I braked into a compression and damaged the front-right suspension. We couldn’t steer the car around the next left-hand corner and went off the edge of the road. The drop was so steep that we rolled into the water. Luckily the car landed on its wheels, but the water was so deep that the car sank really fast. I also had a problem with my intercom wire because it didn’t come loose and was dragging me into the water. It was not a nice moment to have.”

It was an accident that bore a striking similarity to the one that befell Scottish former FIA World Ladies champion Louise Aitken-Walker and her Swedish co-driver Tina Thörner in Portugal in 1990.

Friday – as it happened

Ogier led 29 rivals from the restart at the Rally Campus in León to the start of the 9.91km of Los Mexicanos. The short gravel special took place in cool, overcast conditions and Neuville moved to within 0.2 seconds of Ogier after setting the second quickest time behind Meeke, who climbed to third place.

Østberg spun and lost nine seconds 1.2km into the test, but Tanak left the road and the car was not visible to passing cars after becoming submerged in water. The incident forced rally organisers to stop the stage after Lorenzo Bertelli’s car had crossed the start, but neither member of the Estonian crew was injured in the frightening incident and they were transported to the end of the special in a safety car.

The leading group headed for the daunting 44.13km of the El Chocolate special. but Paddon stopped 3.1km from the start with rear suspension damage after sliding wide under braking and hitting a rock. Meeke lost third place after getting out of line in a fast right-hand corner 1.5km into the stage. The Ulsterman clipped a rock and damaged the DS3.

Running first on the road in low cloud and cool, overcast conditions was no disadvantage to Ogier and the Frenchman extended his outright lead to 13.3 seconds. Latvala complained about the slippery conditions, but Kubica was in flying form and was running comfortably quicker than Ogier through the early split sections before stopping to change a puncture. A steering arm was also damaged however, and the Pole rolled out of contention soon afterwards. Sordo suffered transmission issues on the start line and windscreen misting after the water splash.

Rally officials decided to stop the stage after Bertelli had started to regroup the field before Las Minas 1. Neuville duly reduced Ogier’s lead to 8.9 seconds, but the Frenchman was satisfied with his morning’s work after depriving Martin Prokop of a first ever WRC stage win in the León street stage where he extended his lead to 9.6 seconds.

“I am very pleased with this loop,” said Ogier. “We made a clever tyre choice and it compensated for sweeping the road. I pushed very hard.”

It had been a short morning for all the WRC2 crews, but they got their first taste of gravel action in Las Minas. Overnight leader Protasov maintained his advantage with the quickest time and extended his lead over Al-Attiyah by 3.5 seconds and Ketomaa by 15 seconds. The Ukrainian reached the midday service with a lead of 11.5 seconds.

Latvala was quickest through the re-run of Los Mexicanos to consolidate third place behind Ogier and Neuville, but the second pass through El Chocolate would be decisive. Lorenzo Bertelli stopped just over seven kilometres into the stage with technical issues and Neuville’s brave challenge also melted in El Chocolate when he rolled and damaged his i20 WRC’s radiator in a left-hand corner not far from the finish after he had sustained a flat tyre.

The carnage continued when Sordo’s Hyundai sustained a flat tyre and he also damaged the bodywork in a water splash. WRC2 entrant Valeriy Gorban stopped on the stage for five minutes, Stéphane Lefebvre punctured, stopped to change a broken wheel lost a total of 11 minutes. Local hero Benito Guerra badly damaged the rear right-hand side of his Ford Fiesta after clouting a tree and lost three minutes in the stage.

Ogier duly headed to stage nine with an advantage of 12.1 seconds over team-mate and stage winner Latvala. Mikkelsen climbed to within 4.6 seconds of Østberg’s hold on third place after the Citroën driver clipped a bank and lost vital time. Protasov extended his WRC2 lead over Al-Attiyah to 14.5 seconds.

The last gravel stage of the day was a re-run of the 15.54km of Las Minas and Latvala continued his resurgent form to shave another 1.2 seconds off Ogier’s lead, even though Østberg set the quickest time to maintain third overall.

Ogier set the quickest time in the 4.6km super special stage and extended his lead over Latvala to 13.5 seconds.


Crews tackle a further eight special stages on Saturday in a similar route format to Friday, with three gravel stages preceded by a second run around the León street stage. The three timed tests are repeated in the afternoon and the León circuit takes centre stage in the evening for the third tour of the super special.

Action gets underway with the 30.27km of Ibarilla at 09.28hrs and this is followed by the daunting 42.90km of Otates at 10.41hrs and the televised El Brinco special at 12.08hrs. The three gravel specials are repeated from 15.09hrs, 16.22hrs and 17.15hrs.

Rally Guanajuato Corona 2015 – positions after SS10

1. Sébastien Ogier (FRA)/Julien Ingrassia (FRA) Volkswagen Polo R WRC 1hr 45min 03.0sec

2. Jari-Matti Latvala (FIN)/Miikka Anttila (FIN) Volkswagen Polo R WRC 1hr 45min 16.5sec

3. Mads Østberg (NOR)/Jonas Andersson (SWE) Citroën DS3 WRC 1hr 45min 32.5sec

4. Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR)/Ole Floene (NOR) Volkswagen Polo R WRC 1hr 45min 48.2sec

5. Elfyn Evans (GBR)/Daniel Barritt (GBR) Ford Fiesta RS WRC 1hr 46min 06.9sec

6. Dani Sordo (ESP)/Marc Marti (ESP) Hyundai i20 WRC 1hr 46min 43.5sec

7. Martin Prokop (CZE)/Jan Tománek (CZE) Ford Fiesta RS WRC 1hr 47min 06.5sec

8. Yuriy Protasov (UKR)/Pavlo Cherepin (UKR) Ford Fiesta RRC 1hr 49min 35.4sec

9. Nasser Saleh Al-Attiyah (QAT)/Matthieu Baumel (FRA) Ford Fiesta RRC 1hr 49min 49.9sec

10. Nicolas Fuchs (PER)/Fernando Musano (ARG) Ford Fiesta RS 1hr 51min 33.8sec

11. Jari Ketomaa (FIN)/Kaj Lindström (FIN) Ford Fiesta R5 1hr 52min 07.1sec














Media Rally Corona GTO Mexico WRC 2015

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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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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

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Media & Comunication TGS Worldwide
Media Toni Gardemeister Driving Academy

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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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