Team Peugeot Total’s Sebastien Loeb has won the Coyote World of Belgium after coming out on top of a thrilling final in Mettet.
The Frenchman led from the opening corner to resist the attentions of Petter Solberg to the chequered flag, Loeb notching up both and Peugeot’s first World RX win since Latvia in 2016.
An exciting conclusion on a day of fantastic action throughout, Loeb got the hole-shot off the line in the final to head Johan Kristoffersson initially through the tight right-hander. despite the championship leader briefly being kicked up on two wheels against the inside barrier as the six-car field funnelled into turn one.
However, a better exit would allow Timmy Hansen slot ahead of the his countryman to place Peugeot 1-2, followed by Kristoffersson and his PSRX Volkswagen Sweden team-mate Petter Solberg.
With the two Audis of Andreas Bakkerud and Mattias Ekstrom trailing in fifth and sixth after losing time with separate wide moments on the opening lap, it was Solberg would move for the Joker first in an attempt to get himself back into contention. It would prove a shrewd move, the Norwegian picking off Kristoffersson and then getting the better of Hansen once they had made their moves.
Loeb, however, would keep his composure to sustain the pressure from Solberg and reel off a popular win in Mettet, the second of his World RX career.
Solberg and Hansen completed the podium, with a recovering Ekstrom – who took his Joker on the final lap – just grabbing fourth from championship leader Kristoffersson. Bakkerud followed in sixth as the entire field finished within three seconds of one another.
Despite a disappointing result in the final, Kristoffersson still leads the overall standings (75 points), ahead of Loeb (66), Solberg (65), Bakkerud (61) and Hansen (59).
M-Sport Ford’s Sebastien Ogier surges ah
Sensational Loeb leads titanic battle
Neuville tops times on opening monster s
GCK completes World Rx driver line-up wi
Timerzyanov joins Grӧnholm as GRX TANECO
Loeb eager to know how he'll fare in Mex
Loeb impressed with the C3 during Mexico
Sébastien Loeb Racing launch World RX pr
Sebastien Loeb Racing enter WTCR with tw
Bakkerud joins Ekstrom driving for EKS A
Dakar 2018: Loeb out, Peterhansel soars
Dakar 2018: Al-Attiyah masters opening s
Loeb will return to WRC in 2018 with Cit
Kristoffersson wins inaugural World RX e
Ken Block is top qualifier overnight at
Rallycross visits Africa for first time
World RX to visit the USA in 2018 as IMG
Eriksson excited for South African bow i
Ekstrom wins in Germany as EKS take doub
Sweden’s Timmy Hansen set the quickest t
Eriksson enters World RX of Germany in B
Loeb hints to "one or two" WRC appearanc
Kristoffersson crowned 2017 WRX Champion
Heikkinen heads points leader Kristoffer
World RX returns to Baltic states for La
World RX - Loheac supercar final 2017
Kristoffersson makes World RX history wi
Sebastien Loeb goes fastest in Q2 at hom
Britain's McRae confirms World RX entry
Loeb keen on loose-surface evaluation fo