Sainz and McRae substitute Loeb After a difficult second day for CitroÃ«n, Carlos Sainz and Colin McRae's Xsara WRCs lie third and fourth respectively. Philippe Bugalski in ninth, stands in a good position to score points. As he was leading, ...
Sainz and McRae substitute Loeb
After a difficult second day for Citroën, Carlos Sainz and Colin McRae's Xsara WRCs lie third and fourth respectively. Philippe Bugalski in ninth, stands in a good position to score points. As he was leading, Sébastien Loeb went off the road and lost hope for a significant result.
Today's second leg of Tour de Corse - Rallye de France comprised six stages and a little less than 200 hundred competitive kilometres. Weather forecasts predicted rain and it fell heavily all through the night, stopped briefly in the morning, with further showers throughout the day. The roads were drying off extremely quickly but could be flooded at any moment.
These conditions made the tyre choices extremely difficult for all the teams, as they needed to be done one hour before contesting the stages.
With the exception of Philippe Bugalski choosing intermediate tyres, the Citroën drivers selected dry rubber for the first group of stages. On stage 7, the road was dry but it was raining in the next one. Driving with patternless tyres was like "walking on the water", with aquaplanning unavoidable.
Sébastien experienced this problem even if he admitted the rain has not made him go off the road. "I had quite a lot of grip on this section. I cut a left corner too much. Trying to correct the line made the car slide. I managed to make the turn for the next right corner but I was too fast and the rear slid too much. I stopped it, but unfortunately it was stuck on a bank with the two front wheel in the air. I had to wait for spectators to help us start again." Ten minutes lost and all hope for victory lost as well.
However, Seb' mentally recovered very quickly : he posted the second fastest time in the following stage. "I decided to make different tyre choices as my team mates' and the other competitors' due to my position in the leaderboard, but the weather didn't help me with these gambles ."
Carlos Sainz and Colin McRae did really well all through the leg. They made wise tyre choices and no mistakes and they lie tonight in an interesting position for the final leg.
Carlos said : "We still have a hundred kilometres to go tomorrow. If the weather is like today, it will be tricky again, but if it's sunny, there will be a big battle. In both cases, we have to keep concentrating on this day before thinking about the Championship."
Telefónica Movistar, Michelin, Magneti-Marelli, Kinetic, OZ, AIS and Citroën Financement are the partners of Team Citroën Total in the World Rally Championship