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Makinen: Ogier was right to turn down Toyota

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Makinen: Ogier was right to turn down Toyota
By:
Dec 15, 2016, 12:31 PM

Toyota team boss Tommi Makinen said Sebastien Ogier made the right decision not to join the Japanese manufacturer if he didn't believe in its WRC project.

Tommi Makinen, Toyota Yaris WRC 2017
Sébastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia, Volkswagen Polo WRC, Volkswagen Motorsport
Toyota Racing, Toyota Yaris WRC 2017
Toyota Racing, Toyota Yaris WRC 2017, detail
Kaj Lindström; Miikka Anttila; Toyota Racing, Toyota Yaris WRC 2017

Ogier won the last four WRC title with Volkswagen but, after his team decided to quit the series, he was forced to look for a new drive for 2017.

Shortly after the season finale in Australia, Ogier was allowed to test the Toyota and M-Sport's Ford.

Makinen reckons Ogier's test with the Toyota was not fully representative - but insists that, if the Frenchman was not "totally satisfied" with that he saw in the test, he was right not to join the Japanese manufacturer.

"He did a little test but he had other plans," said Makinen on Ogier, who ended up joining M-Sport.

"I can say, when he tested with us, we did it on a particularly misleading piece of asphalt.

"I don’t believe it was a proper test and the car did not demonstrate what it is capable of.

"Sebastien has chosen another path and he has done the right thing if he was not totally satisfied with what he saw with us. If he was not convinced, it’s good also for us."

Toyota has recently named Ogier's former teammate Jari-Matti Latvala as its driver alongside Juho Hanninen.

Toyota will make its return to WRC in 2017, which will see the introduction of new regulations to the category.

Additional reporting by Giacomo Rauli

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About this article

Series WRC
Drivers Tommi Makinen , Sébastien Ogier
Teams Toyota Racing
Author David Gruz