Loeb contemplated early retirement


Sebastien Loeb, who
announced his semi-
retirement from
rallying back in
September, had been
thinking about stepping back from the
sport he has
dominated for almost a
decade for seven
years, it has emerged.
Loeb, who made it nine FIA
World Rally Championship
crowns in a row in 2012,
first started contemplating
retirement as a 31-year-
old in 2005, his third
season as a full-time WRC
pilot while he was en route
to his second drivers’ title.
“I think already in 2005, I
told my mother that I would
stop soon,” Loeb told the
Sport Auto magazine in
France. “But it’s also been
a few years that Daniel
[Elena] has been saying to
me ‘come on, let’s keep
going until 2012’ and I
always thought ‘is he mad?’
But in the end, here we are
in 2012…”
Loeb admits though that
what kept him going for so
long was that his need for
competition was just as
great as that of his co-
driver. “I needed to keep
driving,” he pointed out.
“As soon as I realised that,
I put Sebastien Loeb Racing
into place: so that I could
have a long-term future in
motorsport. I’m also going
to be a brand ambassador
for Citroen, but not just
somebody who signs
autographs: that sort of
role doesn’t interest me.”
Ironically, with his nine-
round GT campaign in a
McLaren and four rallies
with Citroen, Loeb is likely
to be just as busy in 2013
as he was this year.

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