Tag: Andreas Mikkelsen

WRC: Sebastien Ogier in a league of his own to score victory in Mexico.

Two-time World Champion in a league of his own to score victory on a rally he believed he couldn’t win.

Sebastien Ogier took his third 2015 World Rally Championship victory in a row on Rally Mexico, despite claiming before the event that it was a rally he could not win due to his disadvantage of running first on the road.

He had clarified that by saying he only couldn’t win if all his rivals don’t hit trouble – and how they did that, in all manner of fashions.

Jari-Matti Latvala had a guilt-edged chance to get his title bid off the mark here, but threw it away when he swiped the left-rear corner off his Volkswagen Polo against a bank on Saturday.

Thierry Neuville, who has become Ogier’s closest rival in recent events, rolled his Hyundai when poised to challenge for the lead.

Citroen’s Kris Meeke also had a great chance, given his hugely preferable road position, but he too crashed out. In fact, Ogier’s rivals seemed to be inventing new ways of not challenging him for honours: Ford’s Ott Tanak even somersaulting into a lake on Friday morning.

Mads Ostberg finished second for Citroen, 1m18.8s behind the dominant Ogier, while Andreas Mikkelsen finished third for VW, another 6.3s behind.

Elfyn Evans finished a creditable fourth in his M-Sport Ford, equaling his best-ever finish at this level, while Dani Sordo suffered a puncture when he was closing in on Evans, and he cruised home in fifth. Czech privateer Martin Prokop rounded out the top six in his Fiesta.

Ogier trumped his own success by taking the three points on offer in the powerstage. Only he could find a way to upstage his own prowess at the moment – nobody else is in the same league right now.

“I think we can be proud,” he smiled after the finish. “The team have done an amazing job this weekend. It couldn’t have been better. One of the best wins of my career.”

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WRC: Ogier wins Rally Sweden as Mikkelsen spins on powerstage

Final-stage drama spells another victory for two-time World Champion, as young Norwegian teammate fails heroically.

Sebastien Ogier claimed the most remarkable victory of his already-illustrious World Rally Championship career on Rally Sweden, as Volkswagen teammate Andreas Mikkelsen spun away his lead on the very last stage.

Mikkelsen began the stage 3s ahead of Ogier, with just the 15.87 powerstage of Varmullsasen remaining.

Mikkelsen was entering the final section of the stage when he clipped a bank on a left-hander, and almost corrected the slide before he nosed into the snow bank again, and required help from the spectators to push him back on the road.

“We gave it our all,” he sighed, and finished 39.8s behind the winner in third.

Ogier was told of Mikkelsen’s spin by reporters after completing the stage.

“I was flat-out, flat-out from the beginning to the end,” said Ogier. “An amazing victory. So happy, so proud.”

Despite starting the day as the rally leader, Hyundai’s Thierry Neuville slipped back to third in the overall standings as the Volkswagens turned up the wick.

An intercom problem caused a trip into a snow bank this morning, costing him time, but Mikkelsen’s spin meant he was promoted back to second. He finished 6.4s behind Ogier.

“I was maximum, I took big risks and there was no chance to drive faster,” said Neuville. “This weekend has been like a wake-up for the team.”

M-Sport’s Ott Tanak finished fourth in his Ford Fiesta, ahead of the second Hyundai of New Zealand’s Hayden Paddon. Elfyn Evans claimed sixth in his M-Sport Ford Fiesta.

Citroen’s Kris Meeke spun on a fast right-hander in the powerstage, trying to jump ahead of fellow Briton Evans, but still finished ahead of Martin Prokop.

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WRC: Mikkelsen takes lead in Sweden after Ogier and Latvala crash

Volkswagen’s balance of power shifts to its young Norwegian as its star names shunt.

Andreas Mikkelsen has taken a shock lead in Rally Sweden after his Volkswagen team-mates Sebastien Ogier and Jari-Matti Latvala both went off during the final forest rally stage of the day.

Ogier spun early in SS9’s Torsby stage, losing well over 30s. He ended the stage with many of his dashboard alarms flashing, as the off had filled his car’s radiators with snow.

“We hit a snowbank in a slow corner,” said Ogier. “I made a mistake, braked a bit too late and went spinning backwards. I got stuck as well. I had to push and take risks, it was the only chance to do something.”

Meantime, just a few minutes later, Latvala crashed on the exit of a right-hander just 600 metres from the end of the stage, ditching his VW Polo just as he was poised to take the lead overall.

“Basically I came too fast into the corner and expected the grip to be better,” he said. “I kept full throttle but it went to the ditch and the whole car got stuck-in. Everything is OK with the car, it’s just that we got stuck.”

Mikkelsen inherited the lead, and was incredulous when told of the news.

“Why? So Seb has a problem as well?” he asked. “OK, that makes things interesting. But Seb will never give up.”

Thierry Neuville set the fastest time on the stage, elevating his Hyundai to second overall. “If we had the quick-shift and the better engine, we would be right in the fight,” he said.

Mikkelsen leads Neuville by 19.7s, with Citroen’s Mads Ostberg now third. Ogier has dropped to fourth, 26.1s off the lead. Latvala lost 8m26s, and is now completely out of contention for victory.

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WRC: Ogier wins Rally Monte Carlo

In four days of varying conditions, it was the reigning champion that came out on top.

Sebastien Ogier is the 2015 Rally Monte Carlo champion, taking home the win over Jari-Matti Latvala by just about one minute.

Interestingly enough, Ogier only won 2 stages of the 15 specials that the drivers tackled over this four-day season opening event.

“Victory in Monte-Carlo means a lot – especially for me, so close to my home town, and at the first rally of the season. It’s a huge challenge but the satisfaction is even more when you make it. Conditions were so tricky this year, but it has been the best atmosphere of a rally I have ever known,” Ogier told WRC.com.

Latvala, who was unable to win a single stage of the 15 on the rally, ended up second overall, and while he never saw the front of the pack he is happy with the result in tough condition.

“I’m delighted. This is much more than I expected, before the rally I was thinking fourth or fifth. I must thank my ice crew for their information,” said Latvala.

Loeb’s bad luck
Despite ending the day eighth, rally legend Sebastien Loeb said he was happy with his performance after his suspension failure on day 2.

“It was great. Okay, disappointed because of the mistake, but I had some pleasure. I enjoyed the rally, a great atmosphere and great to be here.”

While 8th is nothing to write home again, Loeb can go home with the satisfaction of knowing that he won the most stages of the rally.

Right behind him in stage wins, with 4, was Robert Kubica. The pole was flying on the roads of Monte Carlo, but inconsistency and numerous minor mistakes caused the former F1 driver to retire before the final stage with damage.

Kris Meeke, who drove past Kubica’s stopped car on the penultimate stage said “He went off after the finish. I stopped and spoke to him, he said he lost the brake pedal on the finish. He has gone into a wall.”

Rounding out the top five was Andreas Mikkelsen, Mads Ostberg and German Thierry Neuville.

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WRC: Ogier holds lead heading into final day in Monte Carlo

The VW driver drove cautiously today, in tough conditions.

It’s not unusual to see rain, sleet, slush, snow and dry tarmac all in the same stage at Rally Monte Carlo.

So, when you start a leg with an almost 2 minute lead, you certainly drive cautiously in those conditions.

And that is just what reigning champion Sebastien Ogier did, giving up over one minute in an effort to manage the tough conditions over today’s 4 stages.

“We were safe with our tire choices today and I was very slow on every icy part. My studded tires weren’t the fastest option, but they were the safest for the snowy section in the final stage. I had nothing to risk by trying to drive quickly,” Ogier told WRC.com

Volkswagen currently holds 1-2-3 in the rally, with Jari-Matti Latvala and Andreas Mikkelsen now 42 seconds and another minute behind respectively.

Robert Kubica showed his speed this weekend outright winning the first stage of the day, after the scheduled first stage was cancelled for safety reasons.

Nothing special – just driving,” he said. “We had good tires (super-softs), but the conditions were very tricky. Our gravel crew did a very good job. I think I have driven nicely.”

Early leader and former world champion Sebastien Loeb is 9 minutes adrift from the leaders, struggling with the conditions like much of the rest of the field.

“We tried to use the slicks to see how it was. I had to be very careful in the middle bit. Not my best stage,” Loeb said.

Loeb’s teammate, Kris Meeke was fast on the day but his early rally issues have relegated him to the tenth spot overall. Meeke won the last stage, 8.5 seconds from Robert Kubica.

“We tried the crossover combination of 2 studded and 2 super softs. I had a spin and lost 10 or 12 seconds – I could have been faster,” Meeke told WRC.com.

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