Drivers / co-drivers: Sebastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Motorsport), Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Anttila (Volkswagen Motorsport) and Andreas Mikkelsen and Ola Floene (Volkswagen Motorsport).

Team principal: Jost Capito (Volkswagen Motorsport).

Press conference

Q:
Win number 22 of your career and your sixth win this season, congratulations! Plus the fact that Volkswagen has sealed the manufacturers' title - that is a good weekend Seb!

Sebastien Ogier:
To be honest, of course it's a great feeling. I was saying on the podium that as a rally driver we tend to be a little bit egoistical, but first we work for a team and a manufacturer and we have a great one in Volkswagen. I am really happy to be on this podium today. This is the first one-two-three and we fight for it. We knew there was a possibility. We are three great crews in this team and from a personal point of view this was a great one and one that I have to fight very hard for. I congratulate my mates Jari-Matti and Miikka, they kept the pressure on us all the time and we had no time to react. And it's great to celebrate with Andreas and Ola as well, without them we wouldn't be able to make the one-two-three. They have been really strong, okay today they were able to be in cruise mode a little bit, but before that they were very strong. This is a great achievement for the whole team.

Q:
An intense battle throughout the weekend, very close competition between many drivers - how would you rate this victory?

Sebastien Ogier:
That was a really good one. The pushing started on Friday morning. Fortunately the first day was not too long, it was less than 100km and one of the stages was part of shakedown - that made a difference, on the first day that one [stage] saved the first day for me. And then, in the mud, I ended the day as leader - I was a bit surprised by this. Day two was really good. I made a better tyre choice than Jari, still not completely right but at least better than him. We struggled with the meteo forecast. I managed the gap, but this was not an easy job. Jari was in a strong rhythm and I needed to keep the pace high. I did what I had to do. I am really proud of this one especially after some difficult weeks which I mentioned at the press conference. I did some work on myself with my motivation, which was not so strong. I had more ambition and motivation than in the last few weeks. I want to thank some people who helped me, especially some people in the team. And I want to take this moment to dedicate this win to Jost, who was the person who helped persuade me back. So thanks Jost, it's nice to be back on the podium.

Q:
And it's good for the Championship...

Sebastien Ogier:
Of course. I mentioned the manufacturers' and we can celebrate this, but personally this is a great step for the drivers' [title]. We are 50 points ahead and one victory will be enough. That's the plan in France, but first I want enjoy this one and then focus on France. I have fantastic memory from last year and it's possible again - but this time I need the victory. Let's wait and see. I will have the same approach and try to stay clever and be fast and strong. I will not have to give absolutely everything to win, a podium will be good.

Q:
This is a great result for you and Seb in the Championship?

Julien Ingrassia:
Yes...

Q:
But it's been a tough weekend after the crash in Germany?

Julien Ingrassia:
Yes. Seb mentioned it; after the crash I was a little bit shaken, it took me some time to recover. We had for 10 days before coming here. Then I arrived here perfect. You know when you fit yourself inside this race car then you can't have the fear inside of you. Everything has to be perfect. On the first loop of shakedown, there was a strange feeling - but I expected that and I was aware of my sensations. It went very well for the whole weekend. I'm very happy.

Q:
Jari-Matti, would you say the tyre choice yesterday afternoon was the pivotal point in this event?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
There were two moments on this rally, the first was when we had a problem with the brakes and we lost over seven seconds to Sebastien on the first stage. Then on the second day, I took the wrong tyres. We had the same meteo inside the team, but all three drivers went with different choices. Sebastien drove perfectly on those stages, he did a brilliant drive and I couldn't match him with the soft tyres at the rear. Maybe I should have thought a bit more. I can't change though, it's history. This is a big boost from this rally last year though. Last year we were fourth and one and a half or two minutes down.

Q:
What do you think of the Championship?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
The chance is getting weaker, but nothing is over until it's over. As long as there's a chance then we keep the fight on. I'm really looking forward to going to France. I like driving on tarmac and I like Rallye de France. The performance here with Miikka worked really well. Miikka had a fantastic rhythm and if we can maintain that and take the same feeling then we have a good chance to challenge again.

Q:
You didn't have splits in the car today. Why not?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
Today I didn't take the splits. I told the team I would concentrate on my driving. If we don't have splits next year, maybe it's good practice! It was good for me to mentally do my best and only concentrate on the driving - it's good to do this. I didn't think about the performance of Sebastien or anybody else, I just focused on my own performance.

Q:
Second is a great result Miikka, but are you a bit disappointed?

Miikka Anttila:
Like Jari-Matti was saying, last year second would feel like a win, but yes, I am slightly disappointed. But if you try your best and have all the chances in your own hand and you don't take them out, then you have to be disappointed. I am disappointed, but I'm really happy for the whole team. Jost and all of us, we have done a fantastic job.

Q:
There was a great atmosphere in the service park...

Miikka Anttila:
This is one which will stay in the memory for a long time - it's a great feeling to be part of such a great team.

Q:
Andreas, third position here and a podium 'lock out' from Volkswagen, quite a change from the last round. Happy with the result?

Sebastien Ogier:
He was there the rally before - it was us that were not!

Andreas Mikkelsen:
Coming into the weekend my aim was to strengthen my third place in the championship to help manage that gap to fourth place. At the same time being on the podium with my four team-mates is an amazing feeling. It has been a difficult event and difficult tyre choices, but overall the energy behind the team is just amazing. If we can show this with a one-two-three and sign off with the Manufacturers' Championship then you can't ask for more than that.

Q:
Were you happy with the pace?

Andreas Mikkelsen:
On day one and two it was really good and I looked forward to fight with Kris Meeke today. I felt comfortable and felt ready for that, but sadly when he was gone from the fight our day became about bringing the car back and we managed that quite well.

Q:
We saw you fighting with Seb in Poland, are you ready to fight at the front regularly?

Andreas Mikkelsen:
I feel more and more ready. Looking back to last year, I had to fight like crazy to do the stage times that now feel normal. The next thing I needed was consistency and I feel we have that now. When you have that then you can push a bit more and then stay constant there and then push some more - building it step by step. We have been close some of the time this year, but my main aim has been to make third in the championship. If I can do that then after that I will go all out to catch these guys.

Q:
Ola how do you feel?

Ola Floene:
It's good. I should have the big smile, I don't know what to say. Since Kris [Meeke] ended up in his position yesterday night it was a bit disappointing to wake up with a one minute gap - I don't like it like this. I like to fight. But, for the championship, it's great. We have to think about the position and I am very proud and very happy.

Andreas Mikkelsen:
Ah, I do have fight for something. Ola is not third in his championship - I will fight for him.

Q:
You have been mean to him this weekend Andreas... the snakes? Ola what happened?

Ola Floene:
The mechanics made a joke and did it perfectly. I went into the car after the start ramp - it was dark and we started the car and I was opening the road book and concentrating on the paper. He was screaming and I saw the snake coming though the dash, with the lights on it looked like it was alive... nobody opened the door so fast. Ever!

Andreas Mikkelsen:
It was perfect!

Q:
Jost, Volkswagen seals its second Manufacturers' Championship and its first 1-2-3 here in Australia - you did it in style this weekend!

Jost Capito:
Yes. It's really overwhelming. I can't find the right words, but nobody is prouder than me - I just love you guys, I really love you guys. We are such a great team, with such great team spirit. These guys are friends, you know they are sitting down for breakfast and then lunch and dinner together and then you go and fight each other very fairly. We don't have to give any team orders and I have never seen a team like that. I am so proud of you all.

Jari-Matti Latvala:
I have to say thanks to Jost. I gave him a very hard time in Germany, putting the team in a difficult position at home when I crashed with one minute in the lead. This is a hard time for the team, but I am really happy now to see this result, it can change the feeling. It can completely turn it around.

Jost Capito:
I would like to dedicate this one-two-three and the manufacturers' title to the over 500,000 Volkswagen employees globally who support us and help us to make it possible that we can be here and do not envy that we spend the money to be successful. We dedicate this one-two-three to them.

Questions from the floor

Q:
Jost, how big a contrast is this to Deutschland?

Jost Capito:
I can't say the contrast was bigger. We were very happy Andreas and Ola were on podium, but that was the first rally with zero points from the team with Seb and Jari-Matti which was disappointing.

q:
What pressure was there on you after Germany, Jari and S?bastien?

Jari-Matti Latvala:
After the mistake it was very hard, but I did a lot of work with my mental coach Christophe Treier and I was over it soon. Coming here I thought about the mistake, I was really motivated. During the recce I was a little uncertain - it was a corner I went off when I made a change during the recce and my mind was not right. I knew I had to focus a lot more on the recce. It was a little excitement on the first couple of stages, but it felt really good to drive. I felt the concentration and focus was a lot better. Sometimes you have to have these wake-up calls.

Sebastien Ogier:
It's never easy to be back after the big crash. Luckily we have the test and that brought me the chance to get the rhythm and find it again. But the best way is to drive again flat out, put that behind you and do the normal job. I was really focused and we made it again with Julien.

 

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