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26.08.2012 - ADAC Rallye Deutschland

Sébastien Loeb celebrates his ninth overall win in Trier

Multiple world champion Sébastien Loeb and co-driver Daniel Elene also win the anniversary edition of the ADAC Rallye Deutschland. From the very beginning, the Frenchman set the pace with his Citroën DS3 WRC and continuously extended his advantage until the finish. He also came first in the concluding power stage "Circus Maximus" in the Trier city centre. For high-flyer Loeb, it is already his seventh victory of the season and also his ninth win in the ADAC Rallye Deutschland.

Changeable weather and subsequent challenging road conditions as well as technical issues affected most of the other competitors and reduced the field of 71 competitors from 33 countries to 41 teams. Loeb's Scandinavian rival Jari-Matti Latvala came hime second, followed by Loeb's teammate Mikko Hirvonen (Finland).

Crowd favourite Petter Solberg (Ford Fiesta WRC) was able to compete again today after his retirement from yesterday, but was out of contention for a good overall result. Last year's winner Sébastien Ogier finished sixth overall with his Volkswagen Motorsport-entered Skoda Fabia S2000, entered by Volkswagen Motorsport.

Record holder Sébastien Loeb was buoyant at the finish: "That was a tough and difficult rally. For me, things were going very well. It was a perfect weekend, and I like perfect weekends." ADAC sports president Hermann Tomczyk said about serial winner Loeb: "Without any doubt, Sébastien Loeb is an exceptional driver, who has the ability to get his car through the special stages ever faster and more precisely than all the others. Of course, meanwhile, he has a lot of experience, which helps him even more. Loeb is very good for rallying and I hope that he will remain in the sport for a long time to come."

At the event's 15 special stages (approx. 369 km) in the Moselle vineyards and the Hunsrück region, Sébastien Loeb set nine fastest stage times. The other fastest times were split up between rivals Latvala (2), Tänak (2), Solberg (1) and Sordo (1). The two long Baumholder stages "Arena Panzerplatte" with a length of 47 kilometres each on the Saturday and the two Drohntal stages on the Sunday were considered as particularly demanding.

At these competitive stages around Germany's oldest wine-producing village Neumagen-Dhron, from which the ADAC was presented with the coveted wine promotion prize in 2011 for having organised the ADAC Rallye Deutschland for many years, a slight German drama happened as well. Young talent Sepp Wiegand, driving a Volkswagen Motorsport-entered Skoda Fabia S2000, was aiming at tenth place overall after an already convincing performance when he was stopped by suspension failure on the 13th stage and retired.

In spite of the weather with rain at times, the anniversary edition of the ADAC Rallye Deutschland again fascinated 200,000 spectators. ADAC sports president Hermann Tomczyk's verdict: "Of course, the anniversary was tarnished by the accident on Thursday, which unfortunately happened in spite of the really exemplary safety measures. We all hope that the injured person recovers quickly and we wish him all the best.

That aside, we really can look back upon a successful double anniversary, 30 years of the ADAC Rallye Deutschland and ten years as a World Rally Championship round. Seeing how enthusiastic the spec-tators along the route were and given the fact that there were again some 200,000 fans along the various stages, it is legitimate to call this a success story. It shows that a World Rally Championship round is justified and has its position. Running such an event largely without trouble is a masterpiece to which several thousands of people have contributed. From clerk of the course Armin Kohl and his crew via the authorities to the many volunteers. I want to sincerely thank all of them. Had it not been for their commitment, such an event would simply be impossible."
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