WRC

Monte Carlo: Citro?n leg one summary

Three Xsaras WRC in the top 5. The Citroën Xsaras of Sébastien Loeb, Colin McRae, and Carlos Sainz returned to Monaco this evening respectively in second, third and fifth place having successfully completed the longest leg of the ...

Three Xsaras WRC in the top 5.

The Citro?n Xsaras of S?bastien Loeb, Colin McRae, and Carlos Sainz returned to Monaco this evening respectively in second, third and fifth place having successfully completed the longest leg of the rally.

S?bastien Loeb.
Photo by Citro?n Sport.

From the start of the recces last Monday, the rallying world was expecting this year's event to be a "true Monte". For the educated rally crowd, the rally should not be completely dry, nor entirely covered in snow : this would be too easy.

A great Monte should be a mix of road conditions : dry, wet , snow, ice. In a word : very tricky !

This morning S?bastien Loeb started cautiously : "One bend out of two, marked as dry on my pace notes, was actually covered in snow. Each time I needed to reduce my pace."

At the end of the first loop, Citro?n's engineers finetuned the three cars settings. This allowed S?bastien a better performance. He set the fastest time in SS3 and did it again in the very long and difficult stage 5 "Plan de Vitrolles". And yet again won the sixth and last stage of the day.

"With slicks on ice, I was not feeling too much at ease", said Seb. "But it seems that I came out of it best;"

After an excellent start, Colin McRae lost a bit of time, and stalled his engine after he spun on an hairpin (SS4). While trying to find the right pace on SS5, the Scots man found it difficult to get out of his Michelin tyres. He ended up his day beautifully and won the stage sharing that victory with team mate S?bastien Loeb.

"I've got a great feeling with the car. I'm still learning and I am feeling more and more confident behind the wheel as I am driving along."

Carlos Sainz performance did not quite match his team-mates, but he managed to set a second and a third best time. "I want so much to do well for the team" said Carlos. "I am sorry about the lost time but there are still two legs to go ."

Telef?nica Movistar, Michelin, Magneti-Marelli, OZ, AIS and Citro?n Financement are the partners of Team Citro?n-Total in the World Rally Championship.

-citroen-

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About this article
Series WRC
Drivers Colin McRae , Carlos Sainz