Q&A with Stéphane Lefebvre

The rising French star, 22, stepped up to the European Rally Championship’s big league on the season-opener in Austria as part of his prize for winning the ERC Junior title in 2014. Although a mechanical failure forced his exit he still impressed, while building his experience for the future. This year he will chase the WRC2 title and contest selected WRC rounds for Citroën in a World Rally Car in addition to his ERC programme.

How was your experience with the Citroën DS3 R5 on snow?

“I learned a lot from this experience on the snow with the DS3 R5, it was very rewarding. Opening the road in those difficult conditions was good training for Rallye Monte-Carlo. I don’t have much experience with four-wheel drive and even less on snow, so the Jännerrallye was essential for us. It was important to cover as many kilometres as possible with the DS3 R5 for the future.”

So it will help you for Rallye-Monte Carlo, your first world championship event of the season?

“Obviously it helped me to prepare for Rallye Monte-Carlo. We have learned to drive with very little grip and the different conditions on this rally – snow, ice, dark – all of which we are likely to meet in Monte Carlo. Moreover, throughout the rally we have fine-tuned the settings of the car, and now we are able to take the start in Monte Carlo in the best conditions.”

We should see you back in the ERC in Ypres and Estonia. What are your aims for those events?

“Regarding our participation in Ypres, this is a rally near to my home, and I particularly like it as it’s a fast event with slippery roads. The aim will be to fight among the front-runners and reconnect with asphalt. For Rally Estonia, I don’t know if we will participate yet. If this is the case it will be good preparation for Rally Finland.”