Sebastien Ogier: Mexico one of my biggest victories
Despite a poor starting position, World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier clinches a superior victory at the end of the Mexico Rally and takes the lead in the World Championship.
The reigning World Champions Sebastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (Ford) won the Rally Mexico and celebrated their second victory of the season in the third round of the World Rally Championship (WRC) in 2018.10 years after their World Championship debut, Ogier and his co-driver also clinched their fourth overall Mexico triumph. The five-time World Rally Champion set five fastest times on the 22 special stages and also convinced with a tactically clever driving style.
Ogier/Ingrassia thus also regained overall leadership in the drivers’ and co-drivers’ World Championship. In the manufacturers’ classification, M-Sport-Ford improved from fourth to second place. For Ford, it was the first Mexico triumph in 14 years. For the last time Markko Märtin and co-driver Michael Park entered the Ford Focus RS WRC in the 2004 World Championship race.
“I am very happy that Julien and I are able to celebrate our tenth World Championship anniversary with a victory,”said Ogier happily at the finish:”Since our first success in the Junior World Championship 2008, we have experienced so many great moments together. For me personally, this triumph here in Mexico is one of the greatest of my career to date. We really did everything we could for the whole weekend. Julien and the whole team did a perfect job.”
As the runner-up of the World Championships, Ogier had to make it onto the track as the second vehicle on the first leg. The consequence: On the loose gravel he had to fight against the following competitors with traction after. But the Frenchman played his experience skillfully. Thanks to a strong driving performance, he was only 31 seconds behind the leader at the end of Friday’s stage.
On the second day of the rally, the World Champion in his Ford Fiesta WRC as fifth overall benefited from a slightly better starting position and fully relied on attack. The 34-year-old clinched four WP best times and took the lead, 35.9 seconds ahead of second-placed Kris Meeke (Citroen). On the final leg, Ogier even further expanded his time cushion and won the Mexico Rally by 1:03.6 minutes ahead of Dani Sordo (Hyundai).
“The performance was really impressive. Compared to last year, we were able to increase significantly,”says Ogier,”which is a big advantage for the rest of the season. We have been on the road quite close to the limit all the time and have always done our best. We can be very proud of this result. We’ve really done everything we could until the last test.”
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