1 January 1901
Ireland: Quoteboard - Day 2
Sebastien Loeb [Citroen Total WRT]:
"It's looking very promising, but this rally is by no means over. I was forced to push quite hard, but I tried not to take any unnecessary risks. That said, my mission was facilitated by the fact that I feel confident at the wheel of my C4 WRC. For me, it's the only way to feel the limits of my tyres as far as grip is concerned. Anyone can make a mistake, especially in conditions like this. I will try to keep to the same sort of pace tomorrow."
[Speaking about his 'scare' in SS12] "I came out of a corner a bit too wide and my rear wheel smacked the bank. The rim became clogged up with dirt and that caused a big vibration. Given our lead, we didn't hesitate to lift."
[Speaking in the mid-day service] "There was a great deal of water about again and the conditions are pretty much the same as yesterday. We're aquaplaning all the time and it's very delicate out there. The rain is tending to wash the roads clean, though, so it will probably be less greasy next time round. We will still need to tread very, very carefully, however."
Daniel Sordo [Citroen Total WRT]:
"We mustn't lose sight of our mission, which is to hold on to second place in order to try to notch up a one-two finish for Citroën. Mikko had a few problems this morning and the gap between us opened up by a further minute. I am therefore under less pressure, but there is no way I can afford to ease up. I think there was even more water on the stages this morning than yesterday, and that's saying something! To tell the truth, it's not that much fun driving in these extremely slippery conditions. I tried to focus 100 per cent on not making any mistakes."
[Speaking in the mid-day service] "That was incredibly difficult, especially the first stage which was run before it got light. The roads are so flooded that they're more like rivers. We have less pressure on our shoulders now that Mikko [Hirvonen] has fallen back. Our position is more comfortable, but the conditions are just awesome. It just hasn't stopped raining!"
Mikko Hirvonen [BP Ford Abu Dhabi WRT]:
"I had a good rhythm this afternoon, probably the best feeling I've had with the car all weekend. I could have driven quicker but it wouldn't mean anything with the large time gaps. There was a lot of standing water and I think the tyres worked well because the water cooled them down, closer to the temperatures in which they are usually used. Temperatures are falling quickly and it could be icy tomorrow which will make it tricky. The pressure will still be there."
[Speaking in the mid-day service] "Five kilometres from the end of the second stage this morning the pump broke going into a corner. The car moved around a lot in the water and it was hard to 'catch' the sudden moves without power steering. My fight with Sordo is now over. I'm more than a minute behind him and that is too much to catch unless he has problems. There's so much water in the stags that it has washed away the mud."
Henning Solberg [Stobart VK M-Sport Ford WRT]:
"I am very, very happy with my performance today. I was really pushing over the last few stages and had my heart in my mouth at some points, but I've proved I can drive on this surface. I'm not fighting tomorrow for fourth as I came here for top five and that would be perfect for me. I know my limits and I don't want to pass them."
[Speaking in the mid-day service] "I picked up a puncture on the first stage and lost a lot of time. I was being very cautious so I don't know what caused it, I didn't feel like we hit anything. The final stage was very dangerous because of the amount of water on it, I didn't enjoy it. I will just drive at my own pace for the rest of the day and take it stage by stage."
Chris Atkinson [Citroen Junior Team]:
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