Sébastien Ogier has described his rally-winning performance at Rally Guanajuato México as 'one of his best' during a WRC career that reached its 10-year milestone at the weekend.
The M-Sport Ford World Rally Team driver overcame an unfavourable road position on Friday to minimise the time he lost to those running further behind. Then, on Saturday, he spotted his opportunity to attack and surged from fifth to first place.
That's where the five-time world champion stayed on Sunday's final three stages to record an impressive winning margin of 1m03.6sec over Dani Sordo.
The result catapulted the Frenchman back to the top of the drivers' championship standings and also gave Ford its first victory in Mexico since 2004 when Markko Martin and Michael 'Beef' Park triumphed in their Focus.
"Arriving here I knew I had a tough weekend in front of me. I knew I had to be on my best in order to score a good result," admitted Ogier, who took his first WRC victory at the event in 2008.
"I was never thinking about victory. When you're up against people who have a second-a-kilometre advantage on day one it's super hard to compensate.
"It was a fantastic win with Julien [Ingrassia] in 2008 in the Junior category. It's like a dream to be here. There have been 10 years for us and this is one of my best performances."
Ogier admitted he had to be on the limit to take maximum points at the third round of the season and that it was a challenge to balance his frustrating road position with a series of neat and tidy stage performances.
"I was pretty much flat out all weekend," he said. "On day one you start as one of the earlier runners and you try your best and you are on your limit. Some frustration is coming out and you try to minimise the time loss and we did that on Friday.
"Saturday, we were in a better position and we started to attack in the afternoon. We took the lead. I was proud that we gave everything up to the last stage."