Forget Fangio and Senna. Forget even Michael Schumacher. None of them - not one - could lay claim to being as good as Sebastien Loeb. That's what the statistics say. As far as four-wheeled motorsport goes, the governing body has never handed out as many championship trophies as it has to the Citroen-driving Frenchman.
Eight. Count them. Eight.
This year's title fight went down to the wire, but shouldn't have. Loeb had the rest of the field licked by mid-season and, once his employer remembered Loeb's history with Citroen and forgot the fact that it had signed Sebastien Ogier as a joint number one, the deal was done for another year.
Or so it seemed. Loeb and Citroen almost tripped themselves up with a three-rally run that netted only 25 points from a possible and probable 84. Ford's Mikko Hirvonen closed the gap, but missed out again on the final round. There was no danger of Citroen missing out on a seventh manufacturers' title, however.
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David Evans is the rallies editor of Autosport and Motorsport News. A successful rally driving father ensured an early introduction to motorsport and, fascinated as he was by rallying, the fourth estate was of equal interest. Having read (or at least looked at the pictures) from the age of two, he joined <i>Motoring News</i> in 1996 and later moved to Autosport in 2002.@davidevansrally More features by David Evans