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Daniel Elena
Daniel Elena 2012 (detail).jpg
Elena in 2012.
Personal information
Nationality  Monégasque
Born 26 October 1972 (1972-10-26) (age 48)
World Rally Championship record
Active years 1998–2013, 2015, 2018–2020
Teams Citroën, Kronos Citroën, Hyundai
Rallies 181
Championships 9 (2004, 2005, 2006, 2007, 2008, 2009, 2010, 2011, 2012)
Rally wins 79
Podiums 118
Stage wins 925
First rally 1998 Monte Carlo Rally
First win 2002 Rallye Deutschland
Last win 2018 Rally Catalunya
Last rally 2020 Rally Turkey

Daniel Elena (born 26 October 1972) is a Monégasque rally co-driver working most notably with Sébastien Loeb. Between them the pair have won the World Rally Championship (WRC) nine times with Citroën, later competing with Hyundai. Their 79 wins together make him the co-driver with the most victories in the history of the WRC.

Career

He started rallying in 1992 as co-driver to Christophe Bovini but his first 'full season' came in 1996 with Hervé Bernard in the French national championships. In 1998 he became Loeb's co-driver and quickly developed a strong relationship with him, winning every event they finished in the Citroën Saxo Trophy in 1998, then the overall trophy itself in 1999. The following year with Citroën part-backing the duo, they won the two-wheel drive class of the French gravel title.

In 2001, they won both the FIA Super 1600 championship (later J-WRC) in their Citroën Saxo and the French national championship in a Citroën Xsara Kit Car. Becoming an obvious choice for Citroën's WRC team, they made their first start for the manufacturer in the same year, finishing 2nd overall on the 2001 San Remo Rally. A part programme in 2002 included their first win at Rallye Deutschland and in 2003 they became full-time competitors. As team mates to former drivers champions Colin McRae and Carlos Sainz, Loeb and Elena outscored them both finishing the season second overall. They went on to take nine consecutive World Rally Championship titles between 2004 and 2012, before Loeb retired from the series in 2013.

When Loeb came out of WRC retirement in 2018 the pair reunited for Citroën again, running three events and winning Rally Catalunya. Hyundai Motorsport offered Loeb a two year contract running a few events in 2019 and 2020, and Elena once again was his co-driver.

Between 2016 and 2019, Loeb entered the famous Dakar Rally with Elena by his side behind the wheel of a modified Peugeot 3008, reaching the podium twice. In 2021 the pair entered in a Prodrive built car but had to retire. Two months later, Elena posted on social media that he had effectively been sacked by Loeb at Prodrive's request because of the poor Dakar result. Rally's most successful pairing of all time separated after 23 years of working together.

Elena has also entered a few rallies as a driver, including the Monte-Carlo Rally, though never outside France.

Daniel Elena
Elena celebrating victory at the 2005 Cyprus Rally.

Loeb and Elena have won Elena's home rally, the famous Monte Carlo Rally seven times (2003–2005, 2007–2008, 2012–2013).

Elena is the first person to have received the Michael Park Trophy, which is now given yearly to the best co-driver.

Personal life

Elena is divorced and has 2 daughters, Romane and Dorine, with his former wife. He and his new companion Anais Reyne welcomed a daughter, Joy, on 9 October 2020.

Commitment

Elena is today a member of the ‘Champions for Peace’ club, a group of 54 famous elite athletes committed to serving peace in the world through sport, created by Peace and Sport, a Monaco-based international organization.

Complete WRC results

WRC results

As driver

Year Entrant Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 WDC Points
1998 Daniel Elena Peugeot 106 Rallye MON
36
SWE KEN POR ESP FRA ARG GRC NZL FIN ITA AUS GBR NC 0

As co-driver

Year Entrant Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 WDC Points
1999 Equipe de France FFSA Citroën Saxo Kit Car MON SWE KEN POR ESP
Ret
FRA
19
ARG GRE NZL FIN CHN ITA
21
AUS GBR NC 0
2000 Sébastien Loeb Citroën Saxo Kit Car MON SWE KEN POR ESP ARG GRE NZL FIN
Ret
CYP GBR
38
NC 0
Equipe de France FFSA Toyota Corolla WRC FRA
9
ITA
10
AUS
2001 Sébastien Loeb Citroën Saxo Kit Car MON
15
SWE
Ret
POR 14th 6
Citroën Saxo S1600 ESP
15
ARG CYP GRE
19
KEN FIN
28
NZL FRA
13
AUS GBR
15
Automobiles Citroën Citroën Xsara WRC ITA
2
2002 Automobiles Citroën Citroën Xsara WRC MON
2
SWE
17
FRA ESP
Ret
CYP ARG GRE
7
KEN
5
FIN
10
GER
1
ITA NZL GBR
Ret
10th 18
Piedrafita Sport AUS
7
2003 Citroën Total Citroën Xsara WRC MON
1
SWE
7
TUR
Ret
NZL
4
ARG
Ret
GRE
Ret
CYP
3
GER
1
FIN
5
AUS
2
ITA
1
FRA
13
ESP
2
GBR
2
2nd 71
2004 Citroën Total Citroën Xsara WRC MON
1
SWE
1
MEX
Ret
NZL
4
CYP
1
GRE
2
TUR
1
ARG
2
FIN
4
GER
1
JPN
2
GBR
2
ITA
2
FRA
2
ESP
Ret
AUS
1
1st 118
2005 Citroën Total Citroën Xsara WRC MON
1
SWE
Ret
MEX
4
NZL
1
ITA
1
CYP
1
TUR
1
GRE
1
ARG
1
FIN
2
GER
1
GBR
3
JPN
2
FRA
1
ESP
1
AUS
Ret
1st 127
2006 Kronos Total Citroën WRT Citroën Xsara WRC MON
2
SWE
2
MEX
1
ESP
1
FRA
1
ARG
1
ITA
1
GRE
2
GER
1
FIN
2
JPN
1
CYP
1
TUR
AUS
NZL
GBR
1st 112
2007 Citroën Total WRT Citroën C4 WRC MON
1
SWE
2
NOR
14
MEX
1
POR
1
ARG
1
ITA
Ret
GRE
2
FIN
3
GER
1
NZL
2
ESP
1
FRA
1
JPN
Ret
IRE
1
GBR
3
1st 116
2008 Citroën Total WRT Citroën C4 WRC MON
1
SWE
Ret
MEX
1
ARG
1
JOR
10
ITA
1
GRE
1
TUR
3
FIN
1
GER
1
NZL
1
ESP
1
FRA
1
JPN
3
GBR
1
1st 122
2009 Citroën Total WRT Citroën C4 WRC IRE
1
NOR
1
CYP
1
POR
1
ARG
1
ITA
4
GRE
Ret
POL
7
FIN
2
AUS
2
ESP
1
GBR
1
1st 93
2010 Citroën Total WRT Citroën C4 WRC SWE
2
MEX
1
JOR
1
TUR
1
NZL
3
POR
2
BUL
1
FIN
3
GER
1
JPN
5
FRA
1
ESP
1
GBR
1
1st 276
2011 Citroën Total WRT Citroën DS3 WRC SWE
6
MEX
1
POR
2
JOR
3
ITA
1
ARG
1
GRE
2
FIN
1
GER
2
AUS
10
FRA
Ret
ESP
1
GBR
Ret
1st 222
2012 Citroën Total WRT Citroën DS3 WRC MON
1
SWE
6
MEX
1
POR
Ret
ARG
1
GRE
1
NZL
1
FIN
1
GER
1
GBR
2
FRA
1
ITA
Ret
ESP
1
1st 270
2013 Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT Citroën DS3 WRC MON
1
SWE
2
MEX POR ARG
1
GRE ITA FIN GER AUS FRA
Ret
ESP GBR 8th 68
2015 Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT Citroën DS3 WRC MON
8
SWE MEX ARG POR ITA POL FIN GER AUS FRA ESP GBR 18th 6
2018 Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT Citroën C3 WRC MON SWE MEX
5
FRA
14
ARG POR ITA FIN GER TUR GBR ESP
1
AUS 13th 43
2019 Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC MON
4
SWE
7
MEX FRA
8
ARG CHL
3
POR
Ret
ITA FIN GER TUR GBR ESP
4
AUS
C
10th 51
2020 Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC MON
6
SWE MEX EST TUR
3
ITA MNZ 10th 24

* Season still in progress.

JWRC results

Year Entrant Car 1 2 3 4 5 6 WDC Points
2001 Sébastien Loeb Citroën Saxo Kit Car ESP
1
GRE
1
1st 50
Citroën Saxo S1600 FIN
1
ITA FRA
1
GBR
1
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