Loeb sets new rally record
3 September 2006

World Rally Champion Sebastien Loeb has set a new record for the greatest number of wins with a narrow victory on Rally Japan.

The Frenchman's success was his 27th at WRC level, overtaking Spanish legend Carlos Sainz's benchmark. But while Sainz's victories stretched between 1990 and 2004, Loeb has notched up his tally since in just over five years - his first WRC win was in Germany in 2002.

Loeb took a narrow victory in Japan after his main rival Marcus Gronholm spun on the second morning. The Finn hunted down the Citroen driver during the final day's stages but Loeb still had just over five seconds in hand at the finish.

"The record is important but it's not my first motivation," Loeb told our sister site autosport.com. "The most important thing is the championship. But when you are in a battle like we were with Marcus, you really want to push to the end. It was really close, really difficult mentally, but we got it."

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