Sure, Sebastien Loeb is fast, but…
Let’s play a bit of a devil’s advocate here. Sebastien Loeb had it a bit easier on the first stage, starting well down the order and probably hearing a wee bit of information or two about the conditions and struggles of the other drivers. Even if no such information reached Seb and Daniel, they probably had it a bit less difficult compared to first cars on the road. All this does not mean that Loeb’s time on SS 1 was not stunning, but let’s not give him a winner’s trophy just yet, okay? If what he and Citroën Racing say about this Monte flick being a one-off is true, then Loeb has another piece of boost up his sleeve – he does not need to worry about the bigger picture, even though one purpose of him competing in Monte is to drain some points away from Volkswagen. It’s quite simple, Loeb can afford to brake a bit later, to push a bit earlier and to be that much more elaborate compared to everyone else, especially compared to the guys fighting for the championship. It would be awesome if everyone could be just pushing like it’s a one stage championship, but rally doesn’t work like that.
On SS 2 Loeb ran into problems, caused by the same starting position. This time around, it wasn’t beneficial, quite the opposite. Plenty of gravel in corners, and the fact that he already had quite a lead, and suddenly this alien being was just human again. What we did get in just two stages in Monte is a promise of a big fight on the remaining stages. That is if Sebastien Ogier decides to accept the challenge, which I am not sure he should. Oh yes, Loeb may be Alien and OMG and whatnot, but hey, take a look at gaps behind Ogier, pretty big, eh?
Robert Kubica had issues with Fiesta’s electric gizmos. Seriously, I will never buy a road car from Kubica WRC manufacturer team. They’re very unreliable.
Finally, thanks a lot Bryan Bouffier, of course I had you in my fantasy WRC thing.