08 Feb 08
After retiring from Friday’s competition following an accident on SS4, Sebastien Loeb will rejoin the Swedish Rally on Saturday under the FIA’s Superally regulations.
Back in Karlstad this afternoon Loeb gave further details of the accident, and the damage it had caused: “It happened on a fourth gear corner when I touched a snow bank with the front for the car,” he said. “Because the snow was wet and heavy it threw us sideways and we went off the road. The car hit a rock and rolled over. The intercooler, brake and clutch pipes and sump-guard were all broken, but the most important thing was no clutch. In the end some spectators helped up get back on the road and get going again.”
Loeb’s situation was made worse because the next opportunity to repair the car was a remote service - where there are strict limits on time and spare parts.
“It was unfortunate but my retirement was not about the lack of servicing time, it was because we had no parts. We were only allowed to use the parts we had in the car. If we were going to a normal service it would have been no problem. But it wasn’t the case and we left service without repairing the clutch or the intercooler. We would have no clutch for stage starts, about half the engine power, no sump-guard - so it was not interesting to continue. I called the team after service and we decided to stop there."
Even though the lack of service facilities brought his day to an end, Loeb refused to blame anything but himself for his retirement: “It’s the same for everybody. If I stayed on the road I would be still driving - so it’s my fault.”