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Olivier Quesnel, Citroen - Q&A
10 June 2011
Citroen team boss Olivier Quesnel looks back on the WRC season so far and ahead to next weekend's Acropolis Rally...
Olivier, Greece will mark the halfway stage of the season. How would you sum up the rallies so far?
Overall, it's been very positive. Since the start of the year, we've raced in six rallies and five have ended in a Citroen victory! The work done by the whole team from the first drawings of the Citroen DS3 WRC up until today have borne fruit. Loeb has opened up a small gap in the drivers' classification, and Citroen leads the manufacturers' championship. It would be difficult to ask for more.
Have Sebastien Loeb and Sebastien Ogier fulfilled the hopes you've placed in them?
Loeb is Loeb. He never gives anything away, as the most recent rallies have proved. He is as motivated as ever and is still the world champion. Little by little he's opened up a small lead in the drivers' classification and there are still three asphalt rallies to run. Sebastien Ogier had a difficult end to Rally Argentina but that mustn't overshadow what he achieved beforehand. During the Argentinean event he pushed his rivals into making mistakes, and took first place even though he didn't know the stages on the second day. Despite his incident he bagged the points for third place. His victories in Portugal and in Jordan, where he led from start to finish, amply prove that he deserves all our confidence and our backing.
In the past few years, Citroen hasn't been all that successful in Greece. Is it a special challenge for the team?
It's sure that the Acropolis isn't an event in which Citroen has scored that many wins, but it's not an impenetrable bastion! We won in 2005 and 2008 with Sebastien Loeb and Daniel Elena, and we have the same ambitions this year. Loeb, obviously, but also Ogier, who finished second on his only outing in 2009, are both serious victory contenders. We're sure they have what it takes to win with the Citroen DS3 WRC! Our testing to prepare for this very specific event went off well, so it's looking pretty good overall.
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