/ Motorsport

Loeb cruises to victory in Argentina

Updated: Monday, 30 Apr 2012 08:25

Sebastien Loeb
Sebastien Loeb

Sebastien Loeb claimed his third win of the 2012 World Rally Championship campaign as he completed a dominant display at the Rally of Argentina. 

The reigning eight-time world champion secured his 70th WRC victory ahead of Citroen team-mate Mikko Hirvonen, who was under instruction from the team not to challenge for the lead with the Citroen pair enjoying a sizeable advantage over the rest of the pack. 

Loeb's win - his seventh in succession in Argentina - sees the Frenchman open up an 18-point lead at the head of the drivers' standings over Petter Solberg. 

"Another victory here in Argentina it's incredible for me and especially after [his retirement in] Portugal it was important for the team to react like this," said Loeb on wrc.com.

"It has been a great rally here with Mikko finishing second."

Ford stand-in driver Dani Sordo - deputising for the injured Jari-Matti Latvala - also hit trouble on the final day when mechanical problems on the final power stage robbed him of third place.

Mads Ostberg instead took third for Adapta Ford, following up his surprise win in Portugal last time out.

Martin Prokop (Czech Ford) was a career-best fourth ahead of Thierry Neuville (Citroen Junior) and the recovering Solberg in sixth.

Sebastien Ogier was seventh for VW Skoda, ahead of Evgeny Novikov (M-Sport Ford), while Nasser Al-Attiyah took ninth in his Qatar Citroen and Ott Tanak rounded out the points scorers for M-Sport Ford in 10th.