26 Sep 08
Apart from masterminding the technical development of the Xsara, Frequelin's sporting pedigree made him a pretty useful talent scout too. It was Frequelin who in 1998 first discovered a young Sebastien Loeb competing in the French Citroen Saxo Trophy.
Frequelin became Loeb's mentor and with Citroen's support guided him though the French national series and the Junior Super 1600 class of the WRC, which he won in 2001.
Having been given his first big break by Citroen and Frequelin, Loeb repaid their loyalty by signing a two-year contract in 2001.
But it wasn't just new talent that Frequelin could spot. It was the driver in him that loved the chance to give Colin McRae and Carlos Sainz a couple of Xsara seats in 2003. When Loeb led a Citroen lock-out of the podium on the opening round in Monte Carlo, Frequelin could barely conceal his delight. So he didn't. He was in his element: a world-class rally driver breathing longer life into the careers of his brethren.
The drivers were everything to Frequelin. Provided they were on message, that was. Remember Cyprus, 2005? Francois Duval deviated from Guy's script and found himself on the sidelines for two rallies. Not one to shy away from tackling a situation head-on, Frequelin.
With the infrastructure in place, Frequelin then went about monitoring the team's performance in his own way. He could never see the point of sitting in the service park listening to the scanner, watching the split times and waiting for the times to dribble through. Oh, no. That wasn't rallying. Rallying, for him, was at the side of the road. Being close to rally cars was what Frequelin was all about.
And getting to the cars was another part of the adventure: he went by helicopter. To every stage. The chopper would pitch up stage-side, Frequelin extricating himself from the pilot's seat, draped in stopwatches and bristling with radios. Just in time to orchestrate another perfect Citroen performance.