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Wales - Post-event press conference.

Driver / co-driver: Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena (Citroën Total WRT), Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Antilla (BP Ford Abu Dhabi WRT), Dani Sordo and Marc Marti (Citroën Total WRT).

Team principal: Olivier Quesnel (Citroën Total WRT).



Press conference.


Q:
Sébastien, Wales Rally GB has been the win that has eluded you, but you have put that right this weekend after a dramatic final two stages. Citroën takes the Manufacturers title as well – a great result after a difficult weekend.

Sebastien Loeb:
I feel very satisfied for sure. When we arrived here the priority was to try to get the Manufacturers' Championship and so we didn't know really if we had to push or not because the conditions were so tricky – it was so difficult just to stay on the road. It was going well but we had some big moments sometimes because we had no gravel crew and only one tyre; it was really bad sometimes. But we could keep in contact with Jari-Matti, and Dani was just behind so everything was looking good for the Championship so we decided to push for victory.

Q:
You picked up a 10 second penalty on stage 18 after a jump start, which was then removed. Did that spur you on to charge even harder on the final stage?

SL:
The problem was that the penalty was on the board but I didn't know if it was going to stay there or not. So I had to drive like I had a penalty and it was still possible to win because we were only 2.2 seconds, I think, behind Jari-Matti at the start of the last stage. Normally when I do a jump start I know it. We had to take some big risks in the last stage but we won it, and the penalty didn't stay, so that was the most important thing.

Q:
You have done the double this year with the Drivers and Manufacturers' Championships; it's been an incredible year for you and Citroën.

SL:
For sure! It couldn't be better for us. We had everything this year; both Championships, and that was the priority. I beat my own record too! So I am very happy with that.

Q:
During 2008 Mikko Hirvonen was the only real threat to your title hopes – has it been easy for you?

SL:
No it hasn't been easy at all. When you look from outside for sure we won 11 out of 15 events but we had to work very hard for those victories and that is something that you don't really understand if you are not following every stage. On some stages I won only by one second and I tried to push really hard to get those fast times. With drivers like Jari-Matti pushing harder every year and with Mikko going well all season this year it is never easy. But thankfully at the end everything came right for us.

Q:
It sounds like 2009 will be a great year next year. Are you looking forward to it already?

SL:
Yes, sure, I am looking forward. My goal is to win another title. I will try to get six! We will see. There will be some good fights but we need to look at the regulations. In most of the rallies it worked okay to have a hard tyre but in a rally like here you have no cuts, no tyre choice, no gravel crews, no information of the condition of the stages and for me it is getting more dangerous. I understand it is a question of reducing cost but when you see Chris Atkinson's crash I am quite sure that had he had a gravel crew and cut tyres he wouldn't have crashed. He was aquaplaning on the mud. I think it would be cheaper to have a gravel crew rather than a totally destroyed car. We always speak about safety, and this is going the wrong way. I hope for next year, and especially for Ireland, we will be allowed to cut the tyres if it is raining very hard. Like this, as it is now, it is completely wrong.

Q:


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