Sébastien Loeb has been forced to retire from the Silk Way Rally after crashing the Peugeot DKR Maxi out of the lead on the ninth stage.
- Sébastien Loeb and co-driver Daniel Elena crashed at kilometre 82 when they hit a drain just to the right of a river bed, which tripped them over and badly damaged the front of the car. After making some repairs before stopping on two further occasions, they eventually stopped contesting the stage after CP2 and instead took an asphalt road to the bivouac.
- There, Peugeot Sport engineers assessed the damage to the Peugeot DKR Maxi and determined that it would in fact be possible for it to be repaired. But Sébastien Loeb has severely sprained his left index finger during the crash, and would not be able to continue racing as he cannot hold the steering wheeleffectively anymore.
- The decision to retire has been taken on medical advice, to allow Sébastien Loeb to recover properly and take the next important steps in his season, in particular his rallycross campaign with Team Peugeot Hansen.
Sébastien Loeb, Team Peugeot Total driver
“There was hole that I didn’t see, so we hit the inside, and we broke some parts on the front of the car. We made few stops to repair the car to be able to continue, and eventually needed the help of the assistance truck. We couldn’t finish the stage because the night was coming. It was a long day. I have a sprained wrist, and I do not feel that great. So I am not able to continue driving as I can’t actually hold the steering wheel properly anymore. I know though that Team Peugeot Total would have been able to fix the car. Once again I had a really good feeling with the Peugeot DKR Maxi, which is performing well, and I am sure that this is the car we need to tackle the Dakar next year.”