Tue 13 Jun 2023

Ambitious Loubet determined to bounce back in Kenya

M-Sport Ford youngster Pierre-Louis Loubet will look to put a tough first half of the season behind him when he makes his Safari Rally Kenya debut next week (22 - 25 June).

The Corsican star arrived into his first full season at rallying’s highest level chasing a maiden podium, having twice finished fourth aboard a Puma Rally1 Hybrid in 2022, and is looking forward to delivering on that potential in the coming events.

Loubet had been sitting third overall at the previous round in Italy but plummeted down the order after incurring time penalties when he struggled to engage any gears prior to SS5. Damaged steering caused him to go off the road later in the opening day.

“It has been tough,” said Loubet. “After Sardinia, it was time for me to make a refocus and a reset to get ready for Kenya. It’s exciting to go to the Safari Rally for the first time. It’s fair to say the results we had so far were not what we were hoping for – in Sardinia things were working really nicely on the first day even in some tough conditions.

“We will focus on the next one.”

Loubet heads to Naivasha confident in the knowledge his best results have come on rough gravel rallies, with those fourth places coming in Greece and Italy last year.

M-Sport team principal Richard Millener echoed those thoughts, adding: “Sardinia was a tough one for the whole team – everybody in the team is trying so hard right now, but we’re just not getting any luck. We’ll bounce back next week, this championship’s absolutely not over and we’re not about to give up.”

Trailer: WRC Safari Rally Kenya 2023
Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 8:30:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 9:30:00 AM