Sebastien Loeb has been rewarded for his record-breaking eighth successive WRC title after picking up his championship trophy during the FIA's annual gala event - held this year in New Delhi.

Loeb saw off the challenge of Mikko Hirvonen to claim the title again this season, moving him ahead of Michael Schumacher into the outright lead when it comes to FIA world titles.

"What an incredible season!" Loeb admitted after collecting his trophy. "The battle with the other drivers has been intense from the beginning to the end. It was so amazing! After a great start to the season we really had to battle hard again at the end of the year; we lost a lot of our advantage and it was like starting from zero all over again going into the final two rounds. This eighth title makes us very proud, it is extremely special and Daniel [Elena] and I want to thank the Citroen Racing Team for their fantastic work. We will do our best to win again in 2012!"

Citroen also picked up the manufacturers' title for the seventh time at the event.

"Our crews won ten times this year from 13 rallies; it is a very good result and we are very proud of this achievement," team boss Olivier Quesnel said. "However, it hasn't been easy and our adversaries cause us no end of trouble! I want to congratulate them as well as the Citroen Team for these good results."



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