Ogier declares difficult Rally Spain a “positive step” for WRC title bid

Sebastien Ogier declared a fourth at Rally Spain as another positive step in landing an eighth World Rally Championship title despite falling short of his targets last weekend.

Ogier declares difficult Rally Spain a “positive step” for WRC title bid

Spain’s tarmac roads offered the Toyota driver the first realistic chance of sealing this year’s championship in what will be his last full-time season in the WRC.

Ogier only needed to outscore teammate Elfyn Evans by six points to claim the title in Spain, but struggles in finding a set-up to extract the best out of his Yaris plagued his weekend.

The seven-time champion could only finish fourth behind rally winner Hyundai's Thierry Neuville, title rival Evans and Dani Sordo, as his points lead reduced to 17, setting up a championship showdown at next month’s Rally Monza.

Ogier had hoped to challenge for the win on his favoured tarmac but admitted during the weekend that he had “never changed so much on car” during a rally in a bid to find the set up sweet spot.

"It's points for the championship,” said Ogier, reflecting on a difficult weekend.

“Coming here I was targeting higher, but for some reason it didn't happen. In a hard time, we still took what we needed for the championship.

Sébastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia, Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota Yaris WRC

Sébastien Ogier, Julien Ingrassia, Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota Yaris WRC

Photo by: Toyota Racing

“It was a close fight and we definitely tried in the first three stages; then the rain on the last one did not help with my strategy of not taking risks, and I was definitely on the safe side there.

“But overall, we have to remember that this weekend is another positive step for the championship and that’s what matters the most.

“It’s not over yet though, so we’ll have to be good at Monza and try to repeat the success we had there last year.”

Evans says his teammate is still the favourite to win the championship but admits anything can happen in Monza from 18-21 November.

“We know anything can happen but we also know Seb is a pretty smart guy and it is going to take something pretty radical to overtake him,” said Evans.

“But having said that it is quite clear what we have to do in Monza."

Read Also:

shares
comments

Related video

Evans: "Anything can happen” in Monza WRC title decider
Previous article

Evans: "Anything can happen” in Monza WRC title decider

Next article

Modified current WRC cars set to be eligible for 2022

Modified current WRC cars set to be eligible for 2022
Load comments
The WRC heirs scrapping to assume Ogier's throne in 2022 Prime

The WRC heirs scrapping to assume Ogier's throne in 2022

Eight-time World Rally Championship king Sebastien Ogier has abdicated (well, gone part-time) in 2022, meaning for just the second time in the past decade we will have a different champion this year. We pick out the drivers gunning to take his place and take over the mantle as the WRC's new ruler

WRC
Jan 20, 2022
The WRC star that's earned the right to lead M-Sport's revival Prime

The WRC star that's earned the right to lead M-Sport's revival

Part-time opportunities with Citroen and Hyundai have offered brief glimpses of what Craig Breen can do in a World Rally Championship car. Now signed up by M-Sport to lead it into the WRC's new hybrid era, Breen has been given the chance he's pursued for so long and is determined to make the most of it

WRC
Jan 18, 2022
Why the WRC's 'modern Group B' era was rallying at its bonkers best Prime

Why the WRC's 'modern Group B' era was rallying at its bonkers best

The World Rally Championship has brought down the curtain on the aggressive, aero-laden generation of cars first introduced in 2017 that have been likened to the 1980s Group B icons. As the championship prepares to begin a new era of Rally1 hybrid cars, its stars explain just why the outgoing machines were so special

WRC
Dec 24, 2021
Ranking the top 10 WRC drivers of 2021 Prime

Ranking the top 10 WRC drivers of 2021

On the eve of a new hybrid era for the World Rally Championship, the 2021 season was a blockbuster fought out between Toyota's two top dogs, with a familiar figure eventually emerging on top after a final showdown at Monza. We pick out the 10 best performers from the top class and its supporting cast

WRC
Dec 21, 2021
Why Ogier's WRC swansong was a season to savour Prime

Why Ogier's WRC swansong was a season to savour

He’s shuffling into semi-rally-retirement, but Toyota star Sebastien Ogier was at the peak of his powers in the final season for the high downforce era-World Rally Championship cars. Despite Toyota's domination, there was still much to enjoy as the old master emerged atop a fierce title fight against teammate Elfyn Evans.

WRC
Dec 19, 2021
How WRC legend Ogier will be remembered by his peers Prime

How WRC legend Ogier will be remembered by his peers

After winning his eighth WRC title, Sebastien Ogier has drawn the curtain on his full-time rallying career. To understand Ogier's legacy, many of his former rivals, team-mates and colleagues have shared their thoughts on a vastly successful career

WRC
Nov 26, 2021
Ranking lost WRC legend Richard Burns' 10 best rallies Prime

Ranking lost WRC legend Richard Burns' 10 best rallies

Richard Burns was a determined driver who took on the best rally drivers in the world during a boom period in the early 2000s, and beat them. On the 20th anniversary of his crowning glory in winning the 2001 WRC title, and 16 years on from his death on the same date, we pick out his 10 greatest drives

WRC
Nov 25, 2021
The internal focus that made Burns a legendary world rally champion Prime

The internal focus that made Burns a legendary world rally champion

At the turn of the millennium, WRC was full to the brim with rallying's great and good - and 20 years ago on this day, Richard Burns became England's first world rally champion. Although Burns' natural talent drove him to the top, his steely determination and mental strength was the key attribute behind his title-winning form

WRC
Nov 25, 2021