News
»  Emirates
»  Arab World
»  International
»  Sports
»  Business
»  Special Reports
»  Archives
Bookmark and Share
You are here: Home > News Bulletin
Text size
AL Qassimi expects Loeb to go out in style
2013-09-30 14:07:29
WAM ABU DHABI, 30th September, 2013 (WAM) -- Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi today paid a tribute to Sebastien Loeb and said he expects the legendary French driver to go out in style when he makes his farewell World Rally Championship appearance on home territory this weekend.

"He's the greatest driver in WRC history, but he's a lot more than that," said Al Qassimi, as Loeb prepares to drive a Citroen Total Abu Dhabi DS3 for the last time in Rallye de France-Alsace, which gets under way on Thursday.

"Apart from winning the world title nine times in a row, he has won more WRC events than any other driver, scored the most points, and had the most podium finishes.

"His record is amazing, but apart from that he has been a great ambassador for the sport, and of course for Citroen, and there will probably never be another driver like him." While Sebastien Ogier needs only one point in France to clinch this year's WRC drivers' crown, the Citroen Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team have not thrown in the towel in the race for the manufacturer's title.

They trail Volkswagen by 49 points with three rounds remaining, and while the odds are stacked against a ninth Citroen championship success, Al Qassimi says Loeb's desire to sign off with a victory in front of thousands of fervent French supporters could yet lead to an interesting climax.

"He will want to finish with a win for sure, and most of France will be behind him," said the Emirati driver. "There's a big gap at the moment, but you can never take anything for granted in rallying and with three rounds left, a lot of things could happen." With Mikko Hirvonen looking to provide powerful support for Loeb in the second Citroen Total Abu Dhabi DS 3, Rallye Deutschland winner Dani Sordo steps into the Abu Dhabi Citroen WRT for Al Qassimi, who makes his last WRC appearance of the season in Spain later this month.

Loeb, who has retired from full-time competitive rallying to start a new career in circuit racing, won two of his three WRC appearances this season, in Monte Carlo and Argentina, while finishing second in Sweden.

With the French round running through his home region of Alsace in the east of the country, expectations are high and Loeb will be aiming for a repeat of his victory there in 2010 which clinched his seventh world title.

The rally, run on inconsistent asphalt roads, with a combination of narrow and fast sections, begins on Thursday with a single stage in Strasbourg, ending near the city's European Parliament. The next three days bring another 19 stages up to the finish on Sunday.

WAM/HM/CM
Bookmark and Share
Market Watch
»  Abu Dhabi
»  Dubai
»  UAE Stock Market
»  NBAD Exchange Rate
Videos
more...
Surveys
Wam AnyWhere
Get the news at your fingertips..
Weather         For more details click here
City Temperature Humidity
Abu Dhabi 40 24 85 15
Dubai 38 26 75 15
Sharjah 40 24 70 15
Ras Al Khaimah 41 23 75 20
Umm Al Qaiwain 40 23 75 20
Ajman 40 22 75 20
Al Fujairah 32 25 60 15
Al Ain 40 26 70 20
Abu Musa 36 25 75 25
Tunb Kubra / Sughra 36 25 75 25
Delma 38 25 75 25
Ruwais 40 25 80 15
Liwa 41 26 80 20
As-Sila 40 25 75 15