Find out more about our subscriptions

Q & A: Sebastien Loeb explains his Rally Australia crash

World Rally champion Sebastien Loeb crashed out of Rally Australia while leading this morning - the first incident of what was to prove a chaotic day for the WRC field.

Afterwards the points leader spoke exclusively to AUTOSPORT to explain his rare mistake.

Sebastien Loeb's damaged Citroen in AustraliaQ. What exactly happened?

Sebastien Loeb: I saw the split time on the dash. I just saw it. Sometimes I see the split times and sometimes I don't. Usually I wait for Daniel [Elena, co-driver] to tell me. Daniel was telling me a [pace] note and I was waiting until he had finished the note to tell him: "It's okay, I have seen the split."

I don't know why, but I wanted to tell him I had seen it and he didn't have to tell me. Just at this time, when I told him, I was a little bit not concentrating. It was at the entry to the corner, I was a bit too fast. I hit the bank at the exit and we rolled.

Q. The corner was tightening?

SL: It was a fourth-gear corner braking to a second-gear corner 30 metres later.

Q. Having seen the onboard footage, the car seems to roll a lot of times - how fast were you going?

SL: It's not so fast. It was just brutal. I hit the rear in the bank and it threw the front and threw us into the air for a quick roll. It was maybe 90 [km/h] or something like this.

Q. This seems quite an unusual reason for an accident. Is it the most unusual?

SL: I don't know. I remember the crash in Greece [in 2009] was because I was correcting a note and this one was because I was telling Daniel something. It's because of not concentrating.

Q. Do you think you can carry on?

SL: I think it should be okay. They [the FIA] are just looking now, but it seems not bad. But sometimes there can be something which I didn't see.

Q. It's important to come back and fight for the powerstage points?

SL: For sure, it's the only thing we can hope for. We will see what we can do.

  More news  
Read the AUTOSPORT Digital Edition
Visit the shop
See highlights from 60 years of AUTOSPORT
Breaking news feed
Live commentary feed
Ford: Win a huge morale boost
Hirvonen takes win and gains on Loeb
Latvala slows to let Hirvonen lead
Novikov says crash his biggest ever
Latvala to cede lead with one stage left
Latvala still in front in Australia
Latvala leads into final day
Latvala maintains lead over Hirvonen
Hunt delighted with Australia progress
Block rues mistake during recce
Ogier still thinks points are possible
Latvala takes lead in Australia
Ogier had been trying to build big lead
Rally set to have more wet conditions
Ford intends to employ team orders
Ford holds one-two at end of Friday
Loeb: Crash was concentration lapse
Hirvonen leads amid high drama
New engine revitalises Solberg
WRC field say conditions dangerous
Wilson surprised by Loeb's mistake
Citroen hopes Loeb will restart
Ogier crashes out of Australia lead
Ogier leads following Loeb's crash
Loeb rolls out in Australia
Ogier leads after superspecial
Hunt to start despite turbo problem