News that Sébastien Loeb will drive a Prodrive-prepared BRX in the 2021 Dakar Rally came shortly after his departure from the Hyundai WRC team overnight.
The nine-time WRC winner is no stranger to the Dakar Rally, making his maiden appearance in 2016 before featuring for four consecutive years, claiming two podiums in the process.
At 46, he’s also added to his experience in the FIA World Touring Championship, 24 Hours of Le Mans, X Games, Formula 1 tests and the FIA GT Series.
“BRX have got big ambitions for the 2021 Dakar Rally and I’m excited to be a part of the journey with the team," Loeb said.
"There is an immense amount of experience in each area of the team; the best in the field with Prodrive, a track record of success from David Richards, and Bahrain’s rich history in motorsport. This combination is hard to rival, and I’m confident we will take to the dunes as strong contenders in next year’s Dakar.”
The new team – founded by Prodrive International, a joint venture between the Kingdom of Bahrain and world-leading British motorsport business, Prodrive – is being led by Richards.
Throughout his tenure, Richards has led Prodrive teams to six World Rally championship titles, six Le Mans wins and experience leading successful F1 teams. However, the Dakar Rally is the challenge he has yet to undertake.
Loeb will drive BRX’s bespoke Dakar Rally T1 car – a four-wheel drive car, powered by a 3.5 litre turbo-charged petrol V6.
Development of the car and engine has been underway at Prodrive since mid-2019, and the first car is expected to be revealed in the autumn.
“The goal for the Dakar is for sure to be competitive. I hope we’ll be able to fight with all the other drivers," Loeb added.
"We know we are a bit short on time, but I’m sure we’ll do a good job. The goal is the fight for the win!”
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