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I just didn`t want to lift, says Loeb.

Sebastien Loeb put in another 'polished performance' on day two of the Rallye de France-Tour de Corse to almost double his lead in front of his home fans.

The multiple world champion dominated leg two in his Citroen C4 WRC car, failing to win only one of the six special stages.

The Frenchman will now take a 52.4 second advantage over Mikko Hirvonen into the final day and he is just 116.26 kilometres away from a fourth consecutive win in Corsica – and a result that will take him another step closer to his fifth world title.

"It's true that there's no big fight this weekend, but I prefer to be in control. The stages are magnificent and we are enjoying ourselves. We've kept up a good rhythm all day. But the rally is far from over," he warned. "Tomorrow's stages are new and we will need to stay concentrated."

Asked about the day's action and why he didn't take it a bit easier, Loeb added that he preferred to keep pushing as that was the best way for him to stay concentrated.

"Despite our overnight lead, I didn't want to lift too much today," he confirmed. "The terrain is twistier, narrower and bumpier, and the asphalt is more abrasive. There were a few damp portions, too, but our gravel note crew had them clearly marked.

"I tried to keep to the same sort of pace as yesterday and that was probably the best way to stay concentrated. I have every confidence in my car and that means I was able to drive quickly without pushing it to its limits. It also means our lead is bigger right now.

"In the afternoon the hotter temperatures meant that the tyre factor was more important. On the long 25.17km stage, SS11, it was important not to push our tyres too hard to make sure they didn't get too hot and lose their edge. The other stages, SS10 and SS12, were shorter, though, and we were able to go a little faster on those two tests. I would obviously prefer it if we had a fight on our hands but we mustn't lose sight of the fact that a good result here would do our chances in both championships a world of good, and we intend to do everything we can to stay on top tomorrow."

Citroen boss Olivier Quensel meanwhile hailed the form of his number one driver: "Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena produced another polished performance today, picking up five more stage wins. They didn't make any mistakes and looked after their car and tyres impeccably. That approach has taken them even further clear of their pursuers and they are in an ideal position going into the final day.

"Seb and Daniel have once again demonstrated the competitiveness and ability of the C4 WRC on asphalt, but we can't afford to take our eye off the ball. Tomorrow's leg is very long, with more than 116km of competitive action and some notoriously treacherous stages still to come."

For the record, Citroen #2 driver Dani Sordo was not able to re-start this morning under the SupeRally after his off on day one in SS3.

"The FIA scrutineers made a thorough inspection of the car yesterday evening in Ajaccio," the team added. "They deemed that a safety-related component situated at its front-left corner had been damaged in the accident and thus did not authorise him to re-join the event today."


Related Pictures

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Sebastien Loeb (FRA) Daniel Elena (MON), Citroen C4, Citroen Total World Rally Team
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