Tuesday | 17 Mar 2020

Sixth Mexico win timely for Ogier

Sébastien Ogier says securing his first WRC win with Toyota Gazoo Racing in Mexico last weekend came at a perfect time for his championship ambitions.

Victory at Rally Guanajuato Mexico drew him level with fellow countryman Sébastien Loeb as a six-time event winner. It also propelled him to the top of the FIA World Rally Championship after what some perceived as a disappointing start to his Toyota career.

Ogier finished second on his Yaris World Rally Car debut in the season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo and fourth in Sweden last month before dominating the year’s opening gravel round to take an eight-point lead over team-mate Elfyn Evans.

“Our love story with Mexico continues, 12 years after making our debut here,” said Ogier, who claimed an FIA Junior WRC win on his first championship appearance at the event in 2008.

“The two first rallies I’ve been good, but not good enough and my team-mates were better than me. I wanted to react as soon as I can, I think we did a good job and I’ve taken the lead of the championship.

View from the service park

View from the service park

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“Let’s hope the world is getting better as soon as possible and then it will be time to race again” added Ogier, whose win six wins have come with four different manufacturers.

Despite starting third in the order on Friday’s opening leg, Ogier took the lead when Ott Tänak made a mistake and ended the day with a 13.2sec lead over Teemu Suninen. He measured his pace on Saturday but still doubled the gap to win by 27.8sec from Tänak.

“It’s a fantastic team effort, the car has been faultless the whole weekend. Reliable and fast and nothing to complain at all. No mistakes either. We pushed when we needed and tried to control the race to the end.

“I felt good but when you are not pushing it’s always more challenging. It’s easier when you just go for it. We had some gap but in the challenging conditions it’s easy to get punctures on the rocks,” he added.