Before Rally Catalunya
Winner in the last round of the championship and also the defending champion in Spain, Sebastien Loeb
can look forward to a good result in this year's edition of Rally Catalunya.
After a short week of ski holidays can you tell us about your
feelings after your win in Mexico?
“Talking about ‘figures' it is actually excellent as we are now leading both championships. Everything worked well for us and our car. However, what we have learnt on the level of the competition is interesting but incomplete. As Marcus Grönholm was driving first on the road, we cannot be sure we know everything about him yet. We've seen the fight was extremely close with Petter Solberg too. But we have done a good job on the Xsara with the transition to the mechanical diffs and it's still a winning car.”
How did you prepare for the pair Catalunya/Corsica?
“We completed one test session around Vic, in the area where the rally took place until 2004. The stages of the Southern version of the rally compares really well with those from the North: beautiful, fast, often very soft on the surface and with the only problem of deep corners cuttings. Of course we have worked on the mechanical differentials and we now have to finetune the settings. We also worked on different small things and repeated our work on the tyres trying to take the best advantage of the BFGoodrich range. I was already satisfied with the car's balance in Monte Carlo and after this test my feeling is excellent. I am extremely happy with the work the development team of Citroën Sport has done. I hope the times will match my current satisfaction.”
Is tarmac still the Xsara's private garden?
“First indications Friday March the 24th and final answer Sunday the 26th! Except for 2002, since it started in 2001 the Xsara has always competed for a win in Catalunya. It's true that in Monte Carlo, which I consider globally like a tarmac rally, we were fighting in front. It gives us hopes for here. Even if some uncertainty remains especially with the weather and our competitors' level of performance, we will try to win. If we still have that little margin on tarmac, we should take advantage of the situation to score a maximum of points.”
Press release Citroën Kronos WRT