Sebastien Ogier wins Jordan thriller

Sebastien Ogier had to let it all hang out to win in Jordan

Sebastien Ogier has become the first World Rally Championship driver to earn maximum points by winning the climactic bonus point Power Stage as well as taking overall victory at the Jordan Rally.

The Citroen Total World Rally Team driver came back from a 0.5-second deficit to Ford rival Jari-Matti Latvala on the final stage, winning the Jordan Rally by 0.2 seconds – the narrowest victory margin in WRC history.

Ogier started the final day with a 31.6 second lead but facing the disadvantage of running first on the road, a task that had left Ford’s Mikko Hirvonen trailing by over two minutes after the first day’s stages. Hirvonen’s BP Ford Abu Dhabi team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala pushed his Fiesta RS WRC to the very limit to overturn the gap, passing Sebastien Loeb in the morning and finally breaking Ogier’s lead on the penultimate stage.

“Incredible,” said Ogier.

“I had to push like hell today. It’s an amazing feeling. Jari-Matti was so fast today and I had to drive flat out. I’m so happy to end like this.”

Latvala dropped time in the middle of the final stage and at one point was 4.5 seconds down on his team-mate’s benchmark time. An enormous push over the closing kilometres brought him to 0.7 seconds away from the leaders, but it was not quite enough to hold on to his overall lead.

“It was a fantastic way for the rally to finish but I’m so disappointed to lose out,” said Latvala.

“It hurts when you fight so hard and lose by such a small margin. I made a few small mistakes on the final stage but I had no option to attack as hard as I could. I took big risks all day, and it nearly paid off.

“My heart was pounding on several occasions because I almost hit big rocks.”

Ogier’s remarkable time of 5:21.720 on the Power Stage was just four hundredths of a second faster than Hirvonen, who had preserved his tyres for a final push to secure maximum bonus points, knowing that he was too far away from the leaders to challenge them.

“We were full on it but I definitely gave it the best shot I had,” said Hirvonen.

“I’m a little bit disappointed with the overall result because yesterday I struggled, but today was better.”

Ogier’s team-mate Sebastien Loeb seemed to have settled for third place overall after suffering from oversteer throughout the day. As usual, though, he had something extra in reserve for the Power Stage but fell just 0.3 seconds short.

“I did a big mistake near the end of the stage,” said Loeb.

“I went completely wide in the sand and it felt like I lost two seconds.”

Petter Solberg (Citroen) started the day in fourth place, but hit a rock and slid off the road and was unable to re-join.

Loeb’s third place finish, coupled with third place on the power stage, moves him into the championship lead with 74 points to Hirvonen’s 72.

Ogier’s maximum points haul means he moves ahead of Latvala in the championship, lying third behind Hirvonen on 69 points with Latvala on 66.
Results : Jordan Rally

Pos Driver Car Model Time
1 Sebastien Ogier Citroen DS3 WRC 2:48:28.2
2 Jari Matti Latvala Ford Fiesta WRC +0:00.2
3 Sebastien Loeb Citroen DS3 WRC +0:27.7
4 Mikko Hirvonen Ford Fiesta WRC +2:44.7
5 Matthew Wilson Ford Fiesta WRC +5:44.9
6 Kimi Raikkonen Citroen DS3 WRC +6:14.9
7 Federico Villagra Ford Fiesta WRC +9:18.7
8 Khalid Al Qassimi Ford Fiesta WRC +9:43.7
9 Dennis Kuipers Ford Fiesta WRC +14:27.5
10 Bernardo Sousa Ford Fiesta S2000 +15:05.5


Driver’s Championship

Pos Driver Car Model Points
1 Sebastien Loeb Citroen DS3 WRC 74
2 Mikko Hirvonen Ford Fiesta WRC 72
3 Sebastien Ogier Citroen DS3 WRC 69
4 Jari Matti Latvala Ford Fiesta WRC 66
5 Petter Solberg Citroen DS3 WRC 31
6 Mads Østberg Ford Fiesta WRC 28

Manufacturers Championship

Pos Team Car Model Points
1= Ford Abu Dhabi Ford Fiesta WRC 130
1= Citroen Total Citroen DS3 WRC 130
3 M-Sport Stobart Ford Fiesta WRC 43
4 Ice 1 Racing Citroen DS3 WRC 26
4 Petter Solberg Citroen DS3 WRC 22
6 Munchi’s Ford Fiesta WRC 20

Comments are closed.