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Rallye Monte Carlo - Post-event press conference

No, obviously not. I don't have enough words to explain my feelings. Everybody knows I am not happy to be second, but here I am. It's so much better than I expect. I wait more than one year to be back. Last year was not easy and I have a lot of frustration and not always perfect motivation. But I was thinking of this rally all the time. I am so, so happy, it's almost perfect. It's a great boost and motivation is back now.

Q:
What does this mean to the team?

Sebastien Ogier:
Everybody was really happy for this result and now they are also asking us for more immediately! We know there are things to improve and it's not perfect, but we know the base is good and I honestly didn't know before the start. So many people ask the question: how competitive, when can you fight for victory, and I honestly didn't know. I was feeling better and better and in the last month of the year I was really happy at the Monte test. But, I had no idea for the performance this weekend; we had some constant grip at the start of Sisteron, when we had 25 kilometres on tarmac and to be on the same rhythm as Seb [Loeb] is good for the future.

Q:
Yesterday provided difficult conditions which caught your team-mate out…

Sebastien Ogier:
Yes, for sure it was not good news. It could have been a really great result to have two cars in the top five, but unfortunately this stage was so tricky. It was easy to make a mistake and unfortunately this happened to him. I am sure he will be back in Sweden; this is not his home event, but he will be fast in Sweden and he will prove he can be competitive and stay on the road.

Q:
Does this raise expectation and the pressure on you?

Sebastien Ogier:
No. It's the opposite. To make a good start and take good points is good and it means I will go to Sweden more relaxed. I will try to do the best there I can. I love this event [Sweden]. Maybe it will be difficult, we don't know about our car there. Just because we performed here and we were on the pace, it doesn't mean we will be there - and on every surface.

Q:
What was the feeling inside the car when you set the fastest stage time on the opening day?

Julien Ingrassia:
Honestly we didn't have time to enjoy it. As Daniel said, you don't have time on this rally: you must always prepare for what comes in front of you. We enjoyed last night when we realise the rally is finished and we have done it in a good way.

Q:
Julien, what does it mean for yourselves and the team to achieve a strong result on the first event?

Julien Ingrassia:
You know I have a good answer – it take a long time… It was a good night and a good rally.

Q:
And a tough rally?

Julien Ingrassia:
In very difficult conditions, we have a smile on our face. The pressure was very high and we just wanted to reach the end. All the rest has been really fun in a way, so exciting and so much pressure. I wouldn't say that in Turini, this was like hell, really tough – but the work the team did in one year and more it begins to pay. But, for sure, this is the right direction.

Q:
Dani, back with Citroen and back on the podium again at Monte-Carlo. How was your rally?

Dani Sordo:
I am really happy. This is Monte-Carlo and I was really happy to finish in third on these really tricky stages, especially Turini. It was so easy to go out there after we saw cars like [Evgeny] Novikov stopped in the stage. After that, I was more relaxed as these were not the best type of roads for fighting. It's okay, I am happy.

Q:
You were having a good battle with Novikov, especially on Thursday. How much did you have to raise your pace against him?

Dani Sordo:
It was a good fight. When I start the stage in Turini, the lines were everywhere – three or four lines all of the time. I thought: “Wow! Is this Seb, Ogier or Novikov?” Then I saw lines that were more like Novikov and I thought: “If this carries on then he will be out…” The conditions were really difficult. I was car four on the road – I don't know how difficult it was for Seb running first.

Q:
How relieved were you when you heard the stages were cancelled last night?

Dani Sordo:
It was really good. The second pass of Turini was a little bit easier, there was half a line and you just had to stay in the line. For the spectators, I am sorry, but it was really, really bad when you go out of the line. We can relax when we hear this news.

Q:
What's your aim for 2013?

Dani Sordo:
To try to fight for the victory and the title and this is a good start.

Q:
Carlos, how was the event for you – especially those really tough stages?

Carlos del Barrio:
With these tyres, it was so difficult. We were very slow in front of the spectators and we need more competitive tyres – but we try to do our best. This is a good result for all the team. We have had a great welcome in Citroen and we enjoy all the week – we are in a good position and have a good fight with competitors.

Q:
What was the best part of the week?

Carlos del Barrio:



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Dani Sordo (ESP) Carlos del Barrio (ESP), Citroen DS3 WRC, Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team
Dani Sordo (ESP), Citroen DS3 WRC, Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team
Sebastien Ogier (F) Julien Ingrassia (F), Volkswagen Polo WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport
Sebastien Ogier (F), Volkswagen Polo WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport
Sebastien Loeb (FRA) Daniel Elena (MON), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team
Sebastien Loeb (FRA), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team
podium

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