Sébastien Loeb, Daniel Elena and their Citroën C4 WRC overcame the three days of rain, fog and
treacherous conditions that were thrown at them during the 2008 Rally Argentina to end the fiercely
fought battle on top spot. The mud didn't deter the spectators from turning out in their usual high
numbers as Dani Sordo and Marc Martí joined their team-mates on the podium in third place. The visit
to South America turned out to be highly successful for Citroën-Total, with Sébastien taking control in
the Drivers' championship, while Citroën is now just three points short of the lead in the
The final leg of the event was once again marked by wet weather, with fog also making an
appearance high in the mountains of the 'Giulio Cesare' and 'El Condor' tests. These were the only
true stages of the day before one last visit to the super-special in Córdoba and the finish ceremony in
Villa Carlos Paz.
Just like Diego Maradona in the days when he starred with the N°10 jersey in Argentina's national
soccer squad, Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena deftly dribbled round the weekend's countless pitfalls
to put their rivals on the wrong foot as they powered home to victory with their Citroën C4 WRC.
During Thursday's shakedown session, as guest passenger alongside Seb, 'El Pibe de Oro' had been
able to see at first hand that the defending World Champion is not just strong technically but also that
it's not only with a ball that a top sportsman can juggle!
One of the challenges faced by Seb over the three days was having to run on Pirelli tyres which, in
keeping with the regulations, turned out to be too hard for the wet conditions. Along with near-zero
grip, crews often had to contend with extremely low visibility, too, so it's no surprise that Sébastien
and Daniel were delighted with their 39th world class win. "Believe me, it wasn't easy," admitted Seb.
"Given the delicate conditions, we had to stay doubly concentrated from start to finish. We also
benefited from a faultless performance from our Citroën C4 which was once again competitive and
reliable. Before coming here, we had been hoping that Rally Argentina would enable us to take the
lead in the Drivers championship and score points for Citroën, and that's what we've done!" Today's
result is Citroën's fifth straight success in Argentina, while Sébastien has become the most successful
driver ever on the South American fixture with a score of four consecutive wins to his name.
"It would have been so easy to get caught out," remarked Dani Sordo before the podium ceremony.
"It really has been a difficult event: a single bend could have compromised all the good work put in by
everyone in the team and the chance for Citroën to close the gap in the championship. I am please to
have finished third and my times were on a par with what I was hoping for."
With two cars on the podium, Sébastien Loeb now on top of the Drivers' championship and Citroën
closer to the lead in the Manufacturers' standings, Olivier Quesnel was also understandably delighted
with the way the weekend turned out. "It's an excellent result for us. When you see how the event
unfolded, it clearly wasn't an easy rally, yet both our crews figured amongst the few who didn't put a
foot wrong. Apart from the steering rack problem which slowed Dani on Friday, we didn't have any
mechanical trouble either. The combination of two such sure-footed drivers and the reliability of the
C4 has enabled us to go top in the Drivers' standings and also make up much of our deficit in the
Manufacturers' points table. It's now up to us to keep up the hard work in order to leave nothing to
chance with a view to repeating the same sort of performance in Jordan, which is the next round. I
would also like to congratulate Conrad Rautenbach and David Senior whose fine run took them to
fourth overall with their Citroën C4 WRC run by PH Sport with support from Citroën Sport
Technologies technicians. Conrad scored his first WRC points in an event that was far from
straightforward given the conditions."