How the French­man left a last­ing im­pres­sion

Motor Sport News - - World Rallycross News - CAL­EN­DAR 2016 BRX Pho­tos: Hal Ridge LEAD­ING EN­TRIES Bri­tish Ral­ly­cross Cham­pi­onship

Se­bastien Loeb’s first ex­pe­ri­ence of ral­ly­cross was in 2012, when the French­man drove a Citroen DS 3 at X Games in Los An­ge­les.

The Citroen was a Hansen Mo­tor­sport-built ma­chine that was run for Citroen Rac­ing in the event. It was called the DS 3 XL (X for X Games, L for Loeb).

The ral­ly­cross new­comer was quick­est in qual­i­fy­ing, started on pole po­si­tion for the fi­nal and won ahead of Ken Block and Brian Dee­gan, both in Ford Fi­es­tas.

The same event was also sig­nif­i­cant as dou­ble World Rally cham­pion Mar­cus Gron­holm crashed out in prac­tice; the Finn was taken to hos­pi­tal fol­low­ing the huge in­ci­dent, which ef­fec­tively ended his ral­ly­cross ca­reer.

In 2013, Loeb drove an­other Citroen DS 3, this time run by Knapick Com­pe­ti­tion in his home round of the Euro­pean Ral­ly­cross Cham­pi­onship at Lo­heac. The car was ca­pa­ble, but not quite as ca­pa­ble as those at the front of the field, and the best Loeb could man­age was fourth in the first semi-fi­nal, just miss­ing a place in the fi­nal.

At the same event, Kris Meeke raced a Peu­geot 208 for the Al­batec Rac­ing team but was un­able to con­vert fast lap times into a re­sult fol­low­ing con­tact and punc­tures, while Pet­ter Sol­berg fin­ished se­cond to com­pa­triot An­dreas Bakkerud af­ter the pair traded places in the fi­nal.

DRIVER

Ju­lian God­frey Pat Do­ran Colin An­son Mark Wat­son Steve Hill Dan Rooke Steve Har­ris Dave Bellerby Jack Thorne Andy Grant Dave New­sham James Grint Kevin Proc­ter Mark Flaherty Ol­lie O’dono­van

Se­bastien Loeb won the X Games for Citroen back in 2012

God­frey will be gun­ning for yet an­other ti­tle Proc­ter was a 2015 win­ner

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