Friday | 20 Nov 2015

Loeb's fond farewell

WRC legend Sébastien Loeb bid a heartfelt farewell to Citroën after confirmation he will leave the French manufacturer following a stellar career.

Loeb will join Peugeot Sport, part of the same PSA family as Citroën, for January’s Dakar Rally. After two final years with Citroën in the FIA World Touring Car Championship, he will play no part in its last season.

It brings to an end an association that began in 1998 and established him as the greatest WRC driver of all-time. He won a remarkable nine consecutive world titles and claimed 78 event victories, before bowing out of full-time rallying in 2012.

He returned for one-off outings and his final event with the team was this year’s Rallye Monte-Carlo.

“A beautiful story ends, but I have no regrets. On the contrary, I only have great memories,” said the 41-year-old Frenchman.

“Since the start of the 2000s, Citroën has been close to my heart. I’ve lived some unbelievable moments that I couldn’t have imagined when I was young. And for that I would like to thank everyone who gave me the opportunity to live my passion every day, who had confidence in me and accompanied me in these victories.

“We wrote beautiful pages in the brand’s competition history. Of course, all these moments were shared with the men and women of Citroën Racing, the mechanics, the engineers and also ‘Danos’ Elena (Loeb’s co-driver).

“These colleagues became my friends, a second family as they say. I have only word to say: thank you,” added Loeb.

Citroën chief executive Linda Jackson, who yesterday pledged the manufacturer’s commitment to WRC by announcing it would develop a car for 2017 to the exciting new World Rally Car technical regulations, paid tribute to Loeb.

“In the last 15 years, Sébastien Loeb and Citroën have made history together. It has been an absolutely incredible period that will leave a lasting mark in the world of motorsport. We would like to thank him for all these wins, titles and records,” she said.

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