15 February 2015
WRC Rally Sweden: This is one of my best wins - Ogier
2013 and 2014 World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier says his second Rally Sweden victory and the 26th WRC win of his career is “certainly one of his best”
Volkswagen's Sebastien Ogier says he is “incredibly proud” to have taken the victory on Rally Sweden this weekend and that he regards it as “certainly one of his best”.
Ogier, who also won in Sweden in 2013, led on Friday until he went off in the penultimate stage and lost around 30 seconds.
He fought back though and on the final day was engaged in a thrilling three-way battle with Hyundai's Thierry Neuville and team-mate Andreas Mikkelsen, overhauling the former in the opening test and then getting the latter in the Power Stage, when the Norwegian spun and dropped back.
Ogier eventually triumphed by 6.4 seconds, a result that gives him 26 WRC career wins in total, putting him level with Carlos Sainz in the all-time win table, behind only Marcus Gronholm on 30 and Sebastien Loeb on 78.
“An unbelievable finale. I am incredibly proud of this win. It is certainly one of my best,” confirmed the two-time World Rally Champion.
“The first victory in Sweden two years ago, when I beat Sebastien Loeb, was fantastic, but this was even harder-fought,” he continued.
“Julien [Ingrassia – my co-driver] and I gave everything here, from day one right through to the Power Stage. I was faster than everybody this weekend but my starting position was so bad. We drove as hard as possible, however, and it paid off in the end.
“It was certainly one of the most thrilling and exciting ends to a rally – not just for the fans, but also of my career.”
Ogier did, however, spare a thought for Mikkelsen, who missed out on his maiden WRC triumph after his error.
“I obviously feel sorry for Andreas, who came so close to his first win and was involved in an extremely intense battle with us. However, I am sure that this is not the last time we will be duelling for victory. He - and Thierry [Neuville] produced impressive performances,” the Frenchman added.
Meanwhile, Volkswagen Motorsport boss Jost Capito paid homage to all three victory contenders.
“What an exciting rally. I am sure that the World Rally Championship has won a lot of fans around the world this week. Today, the podium positions were genuinely decided in the final metres,” he stated.
“Andreas led until the final split, and came within a whisker of his first victory in the World Championship. He really pushed our double world champion Sebastien and his friend Thierry to the limit and can be proud of his performance. His time will come sooner or later, there is no doubting that.
“Sebastien produced an incredibly impressive display though, particularly from a mental point of view, and fully deserved to win in the end.
"I take my hat off to the drivers and co-drivers,” Capito summarised.
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