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Pre-event press conference - Australia

Present:
Sebastien Loeb (Citroen Total World Rally Team), Sebastien Ogier (Citroen Total World Rally Team), Malcolm Wilson (Ford Abu Dhabi World Rally Team), Evgeny Novikov (M-Sport Stobart Ford World Rally Team)
Q:
Seb, you lead the Championship as we head into a brand new event here in Australia. What do you think of the stages?

Sebastien Loeb:
Sure it's always more difficult when it's a new rally. You must be more concentrated in the recce with the notes. The stages are quite wide and fast. Some have narrow bits but are generally quite fast. The second leg is looking very similar to New Zealand, the first and third similar to Australia in previous years.

Q:
How much loose gravel is out there?

Sebastien Loeb:
The first day is not the worst. There are some loose parts but some [stages] are generally quite clean. It depends on the weather as well, as we have heard about rain. It's important to find the right rhythm. In my position, being first on the road, it is not always easy but we will see.

Q:
You have a 25 point lead over team-mate Sebastien Ogier; do you need to win here in terms of the Championship?

Sebastien Loeb:
It's not crucial to win but it's important to push and fight and score manufacturer points.

Q:
There's a chance that Citroën can win the Manufacturers' Championship this weekend - I believe it's a one-two result that's required?

Sebastien Loeb:
I know it's possible. It's like every rally; you go into every rally wanting to score good points. We have three long days to go so we will concentrate on the rally.

Q:
After team orders were deployed on Rallye Deutschland, will we see a straight fight between the Citroen drivers this weekend?

Sebastien Loeb:
I think we will start to fight with Ford first and we should be more worried about their drivers. I think that maybe we will not be in the easiest position at the end of the weekend.

Q:
There was a lot of attention on the team during the last event, with regards to the battle internally between you and Sebastien [Ogier]. What is the atmosphere like within the team?

Sebastien Loeb:
It hasn't really changed. We work together and we are doing our best. We work in all aspects together and nothing's changed.

Q:
Sebastien, what are your initial thoughts about the rally? Do you feel these stages will suit you?

Sebastien Ogier:
Yes I hope so. I'm really happy to be here. It's always good for me to drive in the Southern Hemisphere. It was good for me last year in New Zealand. It was good two years ago in Australia; it was the first time we really fought with the top drivers. Hopefully this year will be nice. It's always good for me to start a new rally. It gives me the same level of experience as the other drivers. Hopefully it will be the same here.

Q:
After taking maximum points in Germany how confident do you feel about your Championship title battle?

Sebastien Ogier:


Tagged as: Ford , Wilson , Novikov , Citroën , Australia , Ogier

Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Sebastien Loeb (FRA), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total World Rally Team
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Simone Tempestini (ROM) Dorin Pulpea (ROM), Citroen DS3 R3
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Bernardo Sousa, Hugo Magalhaes, (Ford Fiesta RRC, #43)
Bernardo Sousa, Hugo Magalhaes, (Ford Fiesta RRC, #43)
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Henning Solberg, Ilka Minor (Ford Fiesta WRC, #16)
Henning Solberg, Ilka Minor (Ford Fiesta WRC, #16)
Henning Solberg, Ilka Minor (Ford Fiesta WRC, #16)

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