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Rally and Endurance

Monday 25th July 2011

SOLBERG AND R?IKK?NEN READY FOR RALLY FINLAND

Citroën Racing Technologies will provide both Petter Solberg and Kimi Räikkönen with a Citroën DS3 WRC for the Neste Oil Rally Finland, the eighth round of the FIA World Rally Championship. The two Scandinavians will be among the crowd’s favourites in what has become one of the most famous events in the WRC.

Petter Solberg, currently fifth in the Drivers’ World Championship, will start the event as one of the most experienced drivers in the field with 169 WRC starts to his name, 13 at Rally Finland. It is also the home rally for Kimi Räikkönen and an event he has competed in the last two seasons in 2009-10.

The two drivers each spent two days at the wheel of the Citroën DS3 WRC on terrain similar to that of Rally Finland to prepare for this round. “We worked in similar conditions to those of a works team,” said Benoit Nogier, the Citroën Racing Technologies team principal. “There was a combination of humps and wide, quick sections. The roads were comparable to the ones we’ll race on.”

“Our drivers were a bit worried about how the car would handle at very high speed. This test session has reassured them about the balance of the DS3 WRC. Petter Solberg was very happy with our setup. We did a good job to help him start Rally Finland as a potential victory contender. The fact that he’s got to grips with the car means that he can tackle this rally in a confident frame of mind.”

Kimi Räikkönen started his long Finnish week on Sunday 24 July with the Red Bull Road Show in Helsinki with Sébastien Loeb.

“Kimi loves his country and his rally,” insisted Benoît Nogier. “He really enjoyed his two-day test and he got the car to handle to his liking. He has a logical approach. He was his usual self, did not get excited and kept his unflappable calm. The road-show will help him to immerse himself in the atmosphere of the rally. We hope he’ll drive a consistent race and close the gap to the front-runners.”
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