There’s another victory ceremony going on at the Volkswagen camp in the World Rally Championship (WRC), as Sebastian Ogier steered his Polo-R to victory in round 3 of the WRC in Mexico. This is the Frenchman’s second win in succession in the event and also his second triumph of the 2014 WRC season.
Ogier pretty much lead most of the stages of this three-day gravel rally event, which on the final day saw him 1 minute 12.6 seconds ahead of second placed Jari-Matti Latvala, his team-mate. Ogier also won the power stage round, earning him three extra points.
“It was a perfect week,” said Ogier. “I came here very angry and very hungry after what happened in Sweden – but this is the perfect way to re-start the championship. The car was perfect, very strong and very fast. I am very happy.”
Latvala is impressed with his Polo, as he said “Rally Mexico was hard work and also very demanding on the cars,” he added. “[But] the Polo coped admirably with the stresses and strains of the high altitude and soaring temperatures, and our team also did a perfect job. Thanks for that.”
It was cheers for the new Hyundai World Rally team as Thierry Neuville claimed the final podium position in the i20. “A big thanks to the team. There are a lot of things we still need to work on, but this bodes so well for the future,” Neuville said. Chris Atkinson, who previously drove the Satria Neo S2000 rally car a few years back, completed the rally in seventh in a Hyundai.
The next round of the WRC will return to Europe for Rally de Portugal, which runs from April 3-6.
Rally Mexico: Overall standings after Stage 22 (Top 10):
1. Sebastien Ogier Volkswagen Motorsport Polo R WRC 4hours 27m 41.8s M
2. Jari-Matti Latvala Volkswagen Motorsport Polo R WRC +01m 12.6s M
3. Thierry Neuville Hyundai Motorsport i20 WRC +05m 28.6s M
4. Elfyn Evans M-Sport WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC +06m 49.3s M
5. Martin Prokop Jipocar Czech National Team Ford Fiesta RS WRC +09m 54.4s M
6. Benito Guerra M-Sport WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC +12m 57.6s
7. Chris Atkinson Hyundai Motorsport i20 WRC +15m 15.4s M
8. Mikko Hirvonen M-Sport WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC +17m 06.8s M
9. Mads Ostberg Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT DS3 WRC +25m 41.6s
10. Yuriy Protasov Ford Fiesta R5 +28m 18.2s WRC2