Sebastien Loeb admitted it was an emotional moment when he crossed the line to complete the final stage of Rally France – securing a victory which also made him the 2010 WRC title winner.
Loeb's seventh successive title was secured after an event which he led throughout, with his run to the crown being eased when fellow Citroen driver Sebastien Ogier hit problems and was forced to retire from the second leg.
The victory was also Loeb's 60th in the WRC and wrapped up the manufacturers' title for Citroen ahead of rivals Ford.
“For sure it is an incredible feeling, and especially to win,” Loeb said. “When I arrived here, I knew that there was a possibility to win the rally, to win the championship, and all that in my home town. So it was a great challenge, and also a big pressure, because I knew that everybody was waiting for this here, in the region. There was a lot of support from a lot of people. The feeling was really great. It was incredible.
“I was expecting this rally to be popular, but I was very surprised to see so many people for the rally, I could not expect that there would be so many people, everywhere: on stages, on the road sections, waving in front of their house, in the service park, everywhere. And all that in a very nice atmosphere. I was really happy to see this.
“It has been a perfect event, like in Corsica in 2004, when we won both Championships at the same time. Here, it is even more special because it is really at home for me. I am really happy for the team because they did a great job all season, the car is really strong, and the difference we have to make is with the driving. It is very difficult and it is a big challenge, with Petter (Solberg), Dani (Sordo) and Sebastien (Ogier). It was not an easy season and I am happy to finish like this.”