Monday | 03 Aug 2015

Ogier closes on title number three

Sébastien Ogier's second place at Neste Oil Rally Finland has moved him within striking distance of a third consecutive FIA world title - with a win possible on the next round in Germany.

The Frenchman leads the drivers' standings with 182 points, 89 clear of his closest challenger, Volkswagen team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala. The next round at the manufacturer's home event, ADAC Rallye Deutschland, (20-23 August) presents Ogier and his co-driver Julien Ingrassia with their first opportunity to wrap up this year's title.

Including Germany, there are five more WRC rounds to go in 2015 and only four drivers can mathematically prevent Ogier from taking the title. Latvala is best placed, followed by Mads Østberg (98 points back), Andreas Mikkelsen (99 points back) and Thierry Neuville (112 points back).

For Ogier to seal the deal in Germany, he'll need to win the rally, take a maximum score on the Power Stage and hope that Latvala finishes no higher than eighth and that Østberg and Mikkelsen do no better than fourth.

Victory in Germany is no foregone conclusion for Ogier, who has crashed there three times in the last two years. In 2013 he broke his suspension and finished 17th, while last year he crashed out of the lead on Friday and then retired altogether after a huge crash on Saturday.

"The two last years were a disaster for me in Germany," Ogier acknowledged. "For two and a half years we make a good performance, but not in Germany – I can say in Germany we have been really bad. I hope we can change that. For me, it’s important, and for the team it would be nice to make them happy with the perfect one. We have some job in front of us."

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