WRC »

Rallye Monte Carlo: Pre-event press conference

Rallye Monte Carlo pre-event press conference with Sébastien Ogier (Volkswagen Motorsport), Elfyn Evans (M-Sport World Rally Team), Thierry Neuville (Hyundai Motorsport), Kris Meeke (Citroën Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team), François Delecour
Press conference

Q:
Sébastien, you return to defend your Championship title in 2014. How different does starting the season as World Champion feel compared to this time last year?

Sebastien Ogier:
Compared to last year, it's a big difference. I was quite nervous this time last year and worried to know where we are. We wanted to know if we had done a good job with the car, we had a lot of questions. Luckily, after one stage, we had a good answer and we knew the car was well born. This year it's different and we have number one on the door and everybody is expecting and waiting for us to win this rally. But everything can happen. The meteo (weather) is difficult for this rally. I will try to do my job – I haven't won this as a WRC round, only in the IRC. And I would love to win.

Q:
Is it an advantage – for the meteo – that you come from Gap?

Sebastien Ogier:
Maybe a little bit, I have some friends around! But with the weather you don't know who to trust – like always we will trust our team.

Q:
Do you expect it to be tougher this year?

Sebastien Ogier:
We always say it's hard to get it [the title] and harder to stay at the top. It's good news to see more manufacturers coming – it's been a long time since we saw four cars, this is good news. For the competition I'm sure the performance of every car will be close – at least we know for the three who have been there before. For the new one [Hyundai] we have to wait, but I expect them to be fast. We have a lot of competition, and with the new regulations the one leading the Championship will have the disadvantage on day one. I'm sure there will be more fighting in the Championship.

Q:
The 2013 WRC season finished just 60 days ago, how much testing have you done since then and do you feel you had a successful Monte test?

Sebastien Ogier:
Let's say the break was not so long! Last year was the first title and I had a lot of request and a lot of trophies to pick up from all around Europe – and that was nice. Then I had two weeks of holiday, which I enjoyed under the sun and with no telephone and no contact with the rally – that was important. But now it's good to be back in the rally car and good to start with Monte-Carlo, especially starting in Gap. Starting in Gap is a special moment and I expect a lot of support. Sporting, it makes no difference, there are only two stages [I know], but the others are all new in my life. Only François [Delecour] might have done some. I'm very happy to be here.

Q:
Elfyn, a fantastic opportunity with a full WRC season ahead of you with M-Sport. How are you feeling ahead of one of the most challenging events on the Championship calendar?

Elfyn Evans:
I'm under no illusions this will be easy – I've got a lot to learn. For the first half of the year I've got to get experience and we'll see then about the second half of the year. It's important that I keep improving and I've got to show promise.

Q:
This time last year you were here as weather crew for Ford. As you stood freezing on the mountainside could you have imagined that in just one year's time you would be in a WRC car?

Elfyn Evans:



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Thierry Neuville and co-driver Nicolas Gilsoul join Hyundai for 2014 [pic credit: Hyundai Motorsport]
Elfyn Evans, Giovanni Bernacchini (Ford Fiesta WRC #6, Qatar  World Rally Team)
Sebastien Ogier [pic credit: VW]
Thierry Neuville, Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC, #7 Hyundai Motorsport)
Thierry Neuville, Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC, #7 Hyundai Motorsport)
Kris Meeke, Paul Nagle (Citroën DS3 WRC, #3 Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT)
Podium
Podium
Podium
Podium
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)
Podium
Podium
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)
Sebastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo WRC #1, Volkswagen Motorsport)

Start the conversation - Add your comment

Please login or register before adding your comments.

Although the administrators and moderators of this website will attempt to keep all objectionable comments off these pages, it is impossible for us to review all messages. All messages express the views of the poster, and neither Crash Media Group nor Crash.Net will be held responsible for the content of any message. We do not vouch for or warrant the accuracy, completeness or usefulness of any message, and are not responsible for the contents of any message. If you find a message objectionable, please contact us and inform us of the problem or use the [report] function next to the offending post. Any message that does not conform with the policy of this service can be edited or removed with immediate effect.




© 1999 - 2014 Crash Media Group

The total or partial reproduction of text, photographs or illustrations is not permitted in any form.