WRC »

Q&A: Xavier Mestelan-Pinon - Citroen

Citroen technical director Xavier Mestelan-Pinon looks back on Sweden and ahead to Rally Mexico.

Q:
How do you feel about the fact that there were no Citroën DS3 WRCs on the podium in Rally Sweden?

Xavier Mestelan-Pinon:
We shouldn't jump to hasty conclusions when analyzing the results of the rally. When the conditions were comparable for all the crews, our cars were at least as quick as those of our rivals. In terms of figures, the DS3 WRCs set ten fastest times out a possible twenty-two. There's only one rally on snow with studded tyres during the season. We had a long debrief after the event, and I think we've found some interesting paths to explore in the future.

Q:
Have you developed the Citroën DS3 WRC more for gravel?

Xavier Mestelan-Pinon:
The World Rally Championship has always been mainly run in gravel events. Even, if it's not a question of sacrificing snow or asphalt, it was very important to be able to count on a car that's competitive on gravel right from the start of the season. Mexico begins a string of seven events on this surface. We've done a lot of testing on different types of gravel from the really rough stuff to the smoother, faster sections. We're continuing to work on the car's handling with the new Michelin tyres.

Q:
One of the main characteristics of Rally Mexico is that it takes place 2000 metres above sea level. Do you have to prepare the cars specifically to compensate for the lack of air?

Xavier Mestelan-Pinon:
We've got a lot of experience of Rally Mexico which we've won with the Xsara and the C4. To be quick on this type of terrain, you have to have a good suspension setup and brakes that last. Concerning the altitude you have to adjust the gear box ratios and play around with the engine mapping. It's the result of work in testing as the engine is no different from the one we had in Sweden.



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Sebastien Loeb (FRA) Daniel Elena (MON), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total World Rally Team
Sebastien Loeb (FRA) Daniel Elena (MON), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total World Rally Team
Sebastien Loeb (FRA) Daniel Elena (MON), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total World Rally Team
Sebastien Ogier (F) Julien Ingrassia (F) Citroen DS3 WRC, Citroen Total World Rally Team
Sebastien Ogier (F) Julien Ingrassia (F) Citroen DS3 WRC, Citroen Total World Rally Team
Xavier Mestelan-Pinon, technical director at the Citroen Total World Rally Team [Pic credit: Citroen]

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.