Q: The title on Thursday, the win on Sunday, could you have expected more from the weekend?
SO: “I don’t think so! To be honest, it was a dream day for me. The title was almost done when I came here. We made the job before with a lot of nice results so I was just missing one point before starting. With the Power Stage on day one we secured the title on Thursday. Then, it makes my life very good but, in the same time, difficult because I just wanted to have time to enjoy. I was flying a little bit and I was not at my best for the beginning of the rally, but finally I managed to react…
“I pushed so hard to come back. I didn’t expect that it was possible because the pace was incredible and the level of the four other guys in front was so strong. Then I came back to the lead. Finally, we did it. It’s just an amazing result! I think Jari-Matti and Dani and their co-drivers deserve also a big applause. They were just on a very high level this weekend.”
Q: On Saturday you mounted a comeback in horrible stage conditions. How did you manage to gain the time on Sunday morning?
SO: “I don’t know. Just by pushing, I think. On Saturday I also pushed but the conditions were even trickier on Sunday morning and then, when you manage to find the confidence, you make the difference. That’s what happened on Sunday morning. I didn’t have big moments. Let’s say it was almost a moment all the time. It was just so slippy and the car was moving in every direction all the time. I was so nervous. At the end, we made a big difference. After that, it was a little bit easier.
“I just had to finish the day. We had to concentrate. I have to congratulate my gravel crew. They gave me the perfect information to be fast in these conditions. I managed to avoid all the tricky places. It was just an amazing weekend. I’m so happy, so proud of my team. We are so close to the manufacturers’ title as well. They deserve it so much. If we got all those good results, it’s thanks to them. They always gave us the perfect car to do it.”
Q: How special is it to win at home in France?
SO: “It’s always a special event for French drivers, with so many people coming. Of course, many of them came here to see Séb Loeb because he’s born here, but still, we got so much support as well. Winning in this condition is a great feeling. I was a little bit disappointed in Australia but finally it was good to get it here. The atmosphere was fantastic.”