LAST TIME OUT: Sebastien Loeb and Daniel Elena in action in France - until the ace crashed out of his swansong rally in late 2013. Image: AFP
• Loeb, Elena, back for full Monte
• One-off appearance for DS launch
• DS 3 WRC: Two titles, 23 winsl
PARIS, France - Nine-times World Rally champions and seven-times winners of the Monte Carlo WRC event, Sebastien Loeb and Daniel Elena, will return to just once to race DS 3 WRC in the opening event in 2015.
The Rallye Monte-Carllo will be the opening round of the 2015 World Rally championship; Loeb crashed out of his swansong rally in France in October 2013 and parked the car on its roof.
From Sweden to Australia, and taking in Argentina, the WRC is undoubtedly the greatest challenge in modern motorsport due to the variety of road surfaces and weatherencountered. With two WRC titles and 23 wins under its belt, DS 3 WRC has one of the best competitive records of the cars currently racing in serries.
‘The Monte’ The will once again start the season in the Mediterranean playground resort.
The two DS 3 cars nominated to score points in the Manufacturers’ championship will be driven by Kris Meeke/Paul Nagle – already confirmed as a works crew for the full season – and a couple of familiar faces!
Leading specialists at a rally that they have won seven times, Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena will take on the challenge once again as they return to road racing more than a year after the end of their shared career.
Often unpredictable due to the weather conditions, the Monte will provide the Franco-Monegasque pair with a perfect opportunity to use their immense experience. Each is modest but excited when talking about the challenge ahead; Seb and Daniel’s once-off return will undoubtedly thrill the many fans who had been hoping to see them compete together again in a rally.
Yves Bonnefont, CEO of the DS brand, said: “When I told them today that Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena would be driving Rallye Monte-Carlo in a DS 3 WRC, the news was greeted with great enthusiasm. It is a great opportunity to support the launch of DS as a premium brand.”
Yves Matton, Citroën Racing team principal, added: “With seven wins here, Seb and Daniel are undeniably the event’s greatest specialists and I’m sure they will be extremely competitive in a DS 3 WRC, which will have some significant technical upgrades.”
Loeb added: “I didn’t hesitate for a second when I was offered the chance to compete at the opening round of the 2015 World Rally championship in the DS 3 WRC. I think Daniel and I would agree that Monte-Carlo is one of our favourite events.
“The beautiful roads, the fact of having to gamble when it comes to tyre choice, and the party atmosphere on the stages: we can’t wait to experience it all again! With the DS 3 WRC – “the little racer” as I nicknamed it when it was first released – I have a lot of good memories; I hope the 2015 Rallye Monte-Carlo will provide yet another.
“It’s going to be a personal challenge for me. I haven’t competed in a rally for more than a year. A few days from now, I’m going to take part in the Rallye du Var and that will give me a chance to reacquaint myself with the car.
“We have also managed to find a few available slots in my schedule so I can take part in testing. I’m absolutely delighted about this opportunity to meet up with the big rallying family during the off-season!”