Trois questions à Sven Smeets, Team-manager de Citroën Racing

Trois questions ŗ Sven Smeets, Team-manager de CitroŽn Racing

13.04.2011: JORDAN RALLY WRC Ė 14-16/04/2011 La participation de CitroŽn Racing au Rallye de Jordanie a-t-elle ťtť remise en cause ?

JORDAN RALLY WRC – 14-16/04/2011


La participation de Citroën Racing au Rallye de Jordanie a-t-elle été remise en cause ?



« Nous avons étudié de très près la situation dans la région, en liaison avec la direction du groupe PSA, le Ministère des affaires étrangères, la FIA et l’organisation du Rallye de Jordanie.


La sécurité de notre personnel et de nos prestataires étant la priorité absolue, ce n’est que lorsque nous avons obtenu des garanties suffisantes que nous avons confirmé notre participation à l’épreuve. »



Quels changements logistiques avez-vous dû opérer ?


« La grande difficulté logistique du Rallye de Jordanie est de déplacer le matériel que nous utilisons habituellement en Europe. La taille de nos camions interdit le transport aérien et impose les voies maritimes. Le plan initial consistait à emprunter le canal de Suez pour débarquer à Aqaba, au sud de la Jordanie.


La situation en Egypte rendant difficile le passage du canal, nous avions prévu d’accoster à Tartous, en Syrie. Au vu des évènements récents, cette solution n’était plus réalisable. En association avec Ford, Northone Sport, Michelin et quelques équipes privées, nous avons affrété un bateau pour Haïfa, en Israël.


L’ensemble du matériel devrait arriver sur les bords de la Mer Morte lundi soir. »




Sur un plan purement sportif, quels sont les scénarios envisageables en Jordanie ?



« La grande particularité de ce rallye concerne le kilométrage de la journée du jeudi (Jour 1) : avec 70 kilomètres de spéciales, il sera impossible pour un pilote partant en cinquième ou sixième position de creuser un gros écart grâce au balayage. A la régulière, le classement de la première étape devrait être à peu près similaire à l’ordre de départ.


Pour autant, un pilote qui perdrait une ou deux minutes le premier jour ne verrait pas ses chances anéanties, car il lui resterait deux longues journées pour remonter. La journée du vendredi sera cruciale, mais pas déterminante au vu du kilométrage programmé le samedi.



Ce rallye sera également marqué par l’apparition d’un nouveau pneu Michelin, sensiblement plus résistant. Nous n’avons pas encore complètement évalué son endurance, mais ses caractéristiques pourront modifier la façon dont les pilotes peuvent attaquer en fonction des conditions de route. »



Marie-Pierre Rossi ,Linda Martins -  photo Citroen

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13.04.2011 / MaP

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