Loeb back where he belongs after victory in Portugal
Citroën’s triple World Rally champion Sébastien Loeb is back at the top of the driver’s standings after an emphatic victory in the Rally of Portugal last weekend (March 30 -01 April). The Frenchman and co-driver Daniel Elena took all six stages on Saturday to set up their third success in this campaign, extending their record to 31 wins in total.
A triumphant Loeb commented: “It was pretty much a perfect weekend for us. My set up wasn’t ideally suited to the terrain during Friday’s first loop but we managed to fine-tune the balance and it was much more to my liking after that. The recent Rally of Mexico and the testing we have done since also helped us find a good set-up for the C4. Step by step, we are gradually exploiting more and more of its potential.”
Spanish team mate Dani Sordo finished in third place to help Citroën Sport close the gap at the top of the manufacturer’s championship to just eight points.
Final Leaderboard for Rally Portugal
1. S. Loeb/D. Elena (Citroën C4)
3 h 53 min 33.1s
2. P.Solberg/P.Mills (Subaru Impreza)
+3 min, 13.9 s
3. D. Sordo/M. Martí (Citroën C4)
+5 min, 05.3 s
4. M.Grönholm / J.Lehtinen (Ford Focus)
+ 1 min 43.7 s
5. M. Hirvonen/J. Lehtinen (Ford Focus)
+ 2 min 24.1 s
FIA World Rally Championship standings after round 5 – Manufacturers*
1st. Ford - 67 pts; 2nd. Citroën - 59 pts; 3rd. Subaru - 27 pts; 5th. OMV Kronos Citroën 21 pts - Stobart -21 pts
FIA World Rally Championship standings after round 5 – Drivers*
1st. S. Loeb - 38 pts; 2nd. M. Grönholm (FIN) - 37 pts; 3rd. M. Hirvonen (FIN) - 30pts; 4th. D. Sordo - 19 pts; 5th. P. Solberg - 16 pts; 6th. H.Solberg - 11 pts
*All results subject to FIA confirmation.