Championship leader Sebastien Ogier has said he is “only looking ahead now” after Volkswagen's dismal weekend in Germany.
Ogier went into the event as one of – if not the – favourite to win, and while he initially lived up to those expectations, he made a crucial mistake at the end of the first day and lost the lead.
Although he was then able to re-start on Saturday, albeit now well down after picking up a ten minute penalty for failing to complete SS6, he crashed out again in SS8 and this time was unable to go any further.
With team-mate and championship rival Jari-Matti Latvala then also joining him on the sidelines on Sunday, it was a bitterly disappointing event for Volkswagen on home soil and one the manufacturer has still to win, although third place by VW II pilot Andreas Mikkelsen was some consolation.
“This weekend is definitely one to forget for us. It is like an exact repeat of last year, and we drivers are solely responsible,” Ogier said.
“The disappointment is obviously twice as great for Jari-Matti Latvala and [his co-driver] Mikka Anttila, and I can imagine how they must feel after we crashed out the day before.”
“However, we ought not forget that we, as a team, have enjoyed a fantastic run of twelve wins in a row with Volkswagen. That is something we can all be proud of. I am only looking ahead now,” he continued.
“Rally Australia gives us another opportunity to secure the Manufacturers' title for Volkswagen and to extend our lead in the Drivers' Championship.
“We will show our fighting spirit down under.”