Sebastien Ogier scored his 30th WRC win at the 2015 WRC Rally Germany in a VW Polo R WRC, dominating in all but two stages. The Frenchman did a respectable job to lead VW Motorsport in a 1-2-3 podium sweep. Second place went to his closest rival, Jari-Matti Latvala, while Andreas Mikkelsen sealed the top three podium finishes in another VW Polo R WRC. Ogier was so close to clinching the world title in this round but Latvala’s success meant that he has to wait till the next round in Australia – all he has to do is finish ahead of Latvala!
Latvala was more than happy to finish in second place given that he crashed out in last year’s event. This was VW’s home event and the drivers did their best to win in front of the eager home crowd and the pressure was definitely there to keep them on their toes. Mikkelsen was under intense pressure from Citroen’s Kris Meeke but when the Citroen went off road on Friday, Mikkelsen extended his lead and never looked back till chequered flag.
An excited Ogier added, “It’s a big relief to win this rally especially. The pressure was on all weekend because everyone expected us to be successful on our home round but we made it. I’m so close to my third title and it’s been a fantastic weekend for us.”
Latvala managed to cross last year’s crash point safely and couldn’t hide his relief after the race. “Now I can relax a bit. I’ve never driven this stage as well as I did now. I know now why I made the mistake last year, my notes were too fast. I wish I could use a time machine to go back a year. You learn every day, every day is a school day!”
Hyundai Motorsport was not far from the victory but the unstoppable VWs meant that they had to settle for fourth and fifth. Dani Sordo lead teammate Thierry Neuville to round off the top five finishers. Meanwhile, Elfyn Evans put the best Ford Fiesta RS in the points zone after finishing sixth overall. Citroen’s Mads Østberg finished in seventh place leading Ott Tänak and a frustrated Hayden Paddon who incurred problems with this Hyundai i20 WRC.
There were a couple of big names in the retirement sheet including Martin Prokop who dropped out of competition after his Ford Fiesta RS suffered mechanical problems. Meanwhile, Ogier continues to lead the standings with 182 points away from Latvala who has 93 points, Ostberg with 84 points, Mikkelsen with 83 points and Neuville with 70 points.
The next race will head over to Australia and take place from September 10th to 13th.