Stéphane Lefebvre has confirmed he will not be competing for Citroën at either Rally Finland or Rally Germany, only minutes after securing an equal career best fifth place in Poland.
The Frenchman turned in what he described as “the best rally of my career so far,” taking two bonus points for finishing fourth in the Rally Poland powerstage earlier today to go with his top five result. However, he will now be absent from the Citroën lineup until Rally Spain in October.
“I won’t be competing in the next two rallies, but I can head off on holiday in good spirits,” he said at the finish.
“It’s a morale-boosting result for everyone after such a difficult start to the season. Whenever there was enough grip, I felt sufficiently confident to push.”
The announcement means Kris Meeke has likely secured a stay of execution over retaining his seat until after Rally Germany at the very least, with Andreas Mikkelsen likely to take Lefebvre’s seat for his third one-rally deal at the fully tarmac event. The Norwegian has two podiums on the road surrounding Trier, finishing third in both 2014 and 2015 while racing for Volkswagen.
Citroën’s full line-up for Finland is expected to be Meeke, Craig Breen and Khalid Al Qassimi, making only his second appearance of the season for French marque after finishing 17th overall at Rally de Portugal.