FIA World Rally Championship
2018, ANOTHER EXCITING SEASON AHEAD FOR CITROËN RACING
Rally Monte Carlo kicks off the 2018 FIA World Rally Championship and marks another exciting season for the Citroën Racing team.
Citroën C3 WRC has already shown it possesses genuine pace on several occasions in the 2017 season and as we go into 2018 the team will look to carry it forward and reach the historic figure of one hundred World Rally Championship victories or even surpass it in this new season.
2018 opens with a challenge for the Citroën Racing team: hoisting the brand to the highest level of the world competition with C3 WRC!
THE 2018 SEASON HAS BEGUN FOR CITROËN WRC!
CITROËN RACING IS A TEAM OF EXPERTS WORLDWIDE RECOGNIZED
In the 2017 season, Team CITROËN Total Abu Dhabi WRT will engage two to four C3 WRCs for its crews.
Kris Meeke / Paul Nagle
After completing a degree in mechanical engineering, Kris Meeke contested his first rally in 2000. His bold, sweeping style caught the attention of Colin McRae, who gave him a helping hand to support his progress. Kris became British Junior Rally Champion in only his second full season. The title gave him the chance to enter the JWRC, in which he initially competed with Opel in 2003 and 2004.
Kris was signed up by Citroën Sport to contest the 2005 JWRC. Driving a C2 Super 1600, he began by winning the Rallye Monte-Carlo and finished the season third in championship. For the 2009 season, Kris was chosen by Team Peugeot UK to contest the IRC. In his Peugeot 207 S2000, he won four rallies to secure the title. He defended his title in 2010, but had to settle for third place. After showing once again that he had genuine pace, he was handed a seat in the Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team for 2014. In his first full season in the WRC, he managed to secure four podium finishes.
Fast on all surfaces, winning in Mexico and Catalonia, Kris heads into the new season as a serious world title contender.
• First WRC rally: 2002 Wales GB Rally
• Number of WRC starts: 84
• Best result in the WRC: 1st (Argentina in 2015, Portugal and Finland in 2016, Mexico and Catalonia 2017)
Craig Breen / Scott Martin
THE IRISH OF THE TEAM
After making his competitive debut in 2008 on the roads of his home country Ireland, Craig Breen’s career really took off in 2011. Competing in the WRC Academy, he managed to win the title on the final stage of Wales Rally GB.
His performances and tenacity earned him a place in the Abu Dhabi Total WRT to contest six rallies in 2016. Eighth in Sweden, seventh in Poland, he moved up a gear as he claimed an impressive third place in Finland. A solid 2017 season showed the development and potential of Craig and see’s him take on the 2018 season full of drive and determination.
• First WRC rally: 2009 Rally de Portugal
• Number of WRC starts: 48
• Best result in the WRC: 3rd (Finland 2016)
Stéphane Lefebvre / Gabin Moreau
‘LE PETIT FRANÇAIS’ OF THE TEAM
Stéphane Lefebvre cut his teeth in the promotional formulas of the French Rally Championship. Leading Junior in the 2012 “Volant 207”, he contested his first international rallies in the European Rally Championship the following year. In 2013, he finished fifth in the ERC’s “Two-wheel drive” category and topped the Junior standings of the 208 Rally Cup again.
For 2016, Stéphane joined the Abu Dhabi Total WRT. He began working alongside co-driver Gabin Moreau, who had just completed two seasons in the ERC with Chris Ingram. In Monte-Carlo, the season started with a fine fifth place.
Stéphane recovered in time to end the season at Wales GB, where he finished ninth. He was joined by Gabin at the Rallye du Var, for a test outing before attacking the 2017 season with the Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT.
– First WRC rally: 2013 Rallye de France
– Number of WRC starts: 26
– Best result in the WRC: 5th (Monte-Carlo in 2016)
Khalid Al Qassimi / Chris Patters
FROM DESERT TO WRC
Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi’s first experiences in motorsport were behind the wheel of 4WD cars during rallies organised in the Emirati desert. His rallying career really began in 2002, when he completed his first full season in the FIA Middle East Rally Championship (MERC). He won the Group N title, and the United Arab Emirates Championship in the same year.
Between 2004 and 2006, Sheikh Khalid pursued his career in the MERC (runner-up in 2005 and third in 2006) whilst also competing in the P-WRC . He then began competing in the sport’s top flight category with the Ford Abu Dhabi WRT in the second half of the 2007 season. He contested around forty rallies with the team, driving a Fiesta WRC. Fifth place at the 2011 Rally Australia remains his best result.
After taking a break from rallying in 2012, he was heavily involved in establishing the partnership between Abu Dhabi, Abu Dhabi Racing and Citroën Racing. The 2013, 2014 and 2015 seasons saw him compete in a number of WRC events and the MERC. He has finished as runner-up in the Middle East Rally Championship on three occasions.
As well as continuing to compete in cross-country rallying – he is set to contest the 2017 Dakar Rally in a 2008 DKR – Sheikh Khalid will be taking part in a selection of WRC events next year in the Citroën C3 WRC.
– Competitive debut: 2001
– First WRC rally: 2004 Acropolis Rally
– Best result in the WRC: 5th (Australia in 2011)
Sébastien Loeb / Daniel Elena
THE ANTICIPATED RETURN
Sébastien Loeb’s illustrious career began in 1999 at the Rally Catalunya track and he won his first rally in the 2002 Rallye Deutschland. In 2003 Loeb came second, a point from the title, but in 2004 the Loeb/Elena domination began with 6 victories and their first of many titles to come. Between 2004 and 2012 Sébastien Loeb and Daniel Elena won 9 Drivers’ and Co-drivers’ titles, eight manufacturers’ titles (2003 to 2005 and 2008 to 2012) and some seventy-eight rally wins.
Both are now looking to enhance their records even further, by competing in three rallies of the 2018 World Rally Championship: Mexico, Corsica and Spain, where they have previously won on six, four and eight occasions respectively.
“REACH A RECORD 100 WORLD RALLY CHAMPIONSHIP VICTORIES IN 2018”
“The new season is upon us, which obviously means both excitement and uncertainty. After claiming second place in Germany and winning in Spain in the second part of 2017, which confirmed the growing strength of the team, I am determined to continue the work begun by Yves Matton, so that the team picks up in 2018 where it left off at the end of last year. This is especially the case since the C3 WRC has been further improved during the off season, with intensive work put into widening its operating spectrum.”
Pierre Budar, Citroën Racing Director
CITROËN RACING IS A TEAM OF EXPERTS WORLDWIDE RECOGNIZED IN THEIR AREAS
FANTASTIC TECHNOLOGICAL LABORATORY
For the last 48 years, the partnership between Total and Citroën has been based on four solid and complementary foundations: R&D, manufacturing, sales & marketing and motorsport. From the brand’s production plants to Citroën Racing’s specialist workshops, the famous motto “Citroën prefers Total” sums up this indestructible link!
ABU DHABI, THE HIGH-RISE CAPITAL OF UAE
Meaning ‘Land of the Gazelle’ in Arabic, Abu Dhabi was founded when a young antelope led a wandering tribe to fresh water, on an island with no more than 300 palm (‘barasti’) huts, a few coral buildings and the Ruler’s fort. This simple island settlement has since been transformed into the modern, cosmopolitan city of Abu Dhabi and the high-rise capital of the United Arab Emirates.
CITROËN AND MICHELIN: RALLYING’S FINEST ASSOCIATION
Citroën and Michelin share so much history together, on both the manufacturing and motorsport fronts. Together, the two companies have claimed five FIA World Rally Championship titles and five FIA Cross-Country Rally World Cups.
SWISS QUALITY WITH A TRUE SPORTING SPIRIT – SINCE 1888
Certina is a serious sport watch brand. Its sport watches don’t just look uncompromisingly good – their quality is also uncompromisingly high.
Certina’s commitment to sport can be seen in more than just the outward appearance of its watches. It is also expressed in the brand’s dynamism, progress, reliability and top performance.