It was Ogier’s seventh win of the season and 31st WRC victory of his career that began in 2006. “And this rally win is very significant”. It was the most hard rally to open the road on. On paper it was impossible to win but I was determined.
“It is a lovely result and it is the flawless way to secure the title”.
Sebastien Ogier came ever closer to taking the 2015 FIA World Rally Championship title by beating Kris Meeke to the lead at the final stage of Rally Australia day two.
“I need to push as there is no choice if I want to catch Ogier”, he said. It wasn’t enough. Seb has done an incredible job.
“We did have a road position advantage on Friday and Saturday and so it would have been nice to sneak a win. And hats off to the Volkswagens”.
Andreas Mikkelsen was fourth in another Polo R. The Norwegian was 9.1sec off the lead and survived a weird incident when his baseball cap landed in the footwell after being dislodged from the back of the auto following a heavy landing. I had a good rhythm and didn’t take any risks.
Paddon, who set the pace on both of the morning stages, will still be looking over his shoulder at Ott Tanak. “We want to push for the podium”. VW were the pace setters and we couldn’t quite keep up.
Paddon and co-driver John Kennard were promoted to Hyundai’s No.1 team for Rally Australia.
“Considering the level and closeness of competition here this weekend we are really happy with P5”, he said after Sunday’s final stage.
The only retirement among the top class was Stephane Lefebvre, who hit a rock and broke the front right wishbone in his DS 3 entry. He re-started on Saturday, however, and was classified 13th on his competitive gravel event with the vehicle. WRC 2 leader Nasser Al-Attiyah completed the leaderboard after Lorenzo Bertelli retired his Fiesta RS with engine problems.
Citroen driver Meeke enters the afternoon stages with a slim lead of 2.3s over Latvala.
The World Rally Championship now heads back to Europe for round 11, with Rallye de France-Tour de Corse running from October 1-4.