7 April 2014
Rally de Portugal: Volkswagen equals record with eight wins in a row
Volkswagen reaches a host new milestones on Rally de Portugal and matches Citroen's feat of eight consecutive WRC victories.
Volkswagen equalled the longest winning run in the history of the WRC last weekend, when Sebastian Ogier took the victory on Rally de Portugal. It was the German manufacturer's eighth consecutive triumph, matching what Citroen did back in 2011.
Meanwhile, Volkswagen also celebrated another landmark in the history of the Polo R WRC in Portugal, with the car contesting its 300th special stage on Friday.
Furthermore just as it had on its previous anniversaries – 50, 100, 150 and 250 – the Polo R WRC celebrated this latest achievement with another stage win and seven special stages later it had brought up another milestone: the 200th stage victory since making its debut in 2013.
By the end of the event, VW had won 204 of the 312 special stages it has contested since the start of last season - a success rate of 65 per cent - and of 850 possible top-three times, 459 have gone to the Polo R WRC.
“The fourth success of the season, a host of new milestones, and a fantastic winning run – what the entire Volkswagen team achieved this weekend, despite the difficult conditions, is simply outstanding,” said Volkswagen boss, Jost Capito. “I am incredibly proud of everyone involved.”
“Sebastien Ogier and [co-driver] Julien Ingrassia were in a league of their own, put their foot down at exactly the right moments, and fully deserved to win,” he continued.
“Andreas Mikkelsen and Mikko Markkula made the best of a difficult situation, showing great maturity in the process.
“The same goes for Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Anttila. Despite their crash on Friday, they managed to limit the damage, score valuable points for us in the Manufacturers' Championship, and pick up points for themselves on the Power Stage. They can be grateful to the Volkswagen mechanics, without whose energetic efforts none of that would have been possible.
“As motorsport director, I can only be one thing about all that: proud.”
Ogier victory's incidentally marked the 24th podium and 14th win in 17 rallies since Volkswagen joined the WRC 'proper' last year.
“The Rally Portugal was just as we expected – difficult for the team and drivers, but ultimately successful,” added Dr. Heinz-Jakob Neußer, Volkswagen Board Member for Technical Development. “Our duo of Ogier/Ingrassia once again showed their class in difficult conditions. But the team also did another fantastic job.
“The way they managed to get Jari-Matti Latvala's back up and running within the allotted time after his crash was mighty impressive. Another reason this trip to Portugal has been so worthwhile for me is that it is great to experience the enthusiasm of the many fans lining the route and cheering our drivers on so magnificently,” he concluded..
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