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Top performance is a must: Volkswagen can make rally history in Mexico.


100th WRC start: Ogier/Ingrassia aim to mark the occasion with a win
Mikkelsen/Jæger are closest challengers, good starting position for Latvala/Anttila
Run of victories: Volkswagen can equal own record in the highlands of Central Mexico

FIA World Rally Championship (WRC)
Rally Mexico

26 February 2016

Wolfsburg (26 February 2016). The air gets thinner as you approach the summit: this is an apt description of the situation at round three of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC). Reigning champions and current World Championship leaders Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F), and second-placed Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jæger (N/N), are facing a stern test at the “Roof of the World Rally Championship”. At the Rally Mexico (03–06 March) they will be starting from first and second place on the tricky gravel stages in Central Mexico. Their Volkswagen team-mates Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN) are eighth onto the route, and all share a common goal: to secure a fourth consecutive win for Volkswagen at extreme heights of up to 2,746 metres above sea level, which would also equal the current record of twelve straight victories for the Polo R WRC. They must complete 399.71 kilometres against the clock over 21 special stages – including the longest and shortest stages ever contested by the Polo R WRC, at 80.00 and 1.09 kilometres respectively.

“We have to deal with extreme situations in Mexico,” said Volkswagen Motorsport Director Jost Capito. “The special stages are the highest of the entire season; we will face the longest stage of the year, and the shortest too in the tunnels of Guanajuato. We travel to Mexico with Sébastien Ogier and Andreas Mikkelsen in first and second place in the World Championship standings – this is anything but an easy task, as they must deal with the disadvantage of opening the route. Jari-Matti Latvala also has a good starting position in eighth. The chance of claiming a twelfth straight victory and equalling our own record gives us a bit more motivation. However, we will have our work cut out at the first gravel rally of the year, due to the very strong field there. We have never shied away from a challenge, and we are looking forward to Mexico.”

¡Viva México! Enthusiastic support from a fair and knowledgeable rally crowd

The most passionate fans in the rallying world, a thrilling start in Guanajuato and the widespread popularity of Volkswagen – the third round of the World Rally Championship season is not just a highlight for the team of Ogier, Latvala, Mikkelsen and co. From Thursday evening to Sunday afternoon, thousands of avid fans will line the routes of the special stages to cheer on the competitors. The official start of the rally takes place in the mining town of Guanajuato, a UNESCO World Heritage site. Featuring a web of tunnels and beautifully painted houses, this is one of the most fascinating and emotional events in the World Rally Championship.

Ever higher, ever further – extremes of height and distance

Onwards and upwards at the Rally Mexico: after 45.6 kilometres of the “El Chocolate” special stage, a long climb leads the World Rally Cars to a fast right and the highest point of the rally season. The “Roof of the World Rally Championship” is at 2,746 metres above sea level. The most challenging aspect of this is the gradual decrease in oxygen levels as the rally climbs ever higher: this means that there is less fuel for the combustion chambers of the 1.6-litre turbo engines. The engineers had to work hard to find a solution that makes the most of the circumstances without adversely affecting the stability of the engine, allowing them to counter a reduction in performance of up to 30 per cent.

The 54.21 kilometres of the “El Chocolate” stage already make this one of the longest stages on the calendar – but it is not the longest by far. Although the exact routes have not yet been agreed for all World Championship races, we can be sure of one thing: the 80 kilometres of Sunday’s “Guanajuato” stage make this the longest test of man and machine in the entire year, as it reaches the limits of what is allowed in the statutes of the FIA, the world motorsport governing body. “Guanajuato” has everything it takes to attain legendary status.

Plenty to celebrate: 100th World Championship start for Ogier and Ingrassia

Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia have long been connected to the Rally Mexico by a special story. They started their World Championship career here in 2008, celebrating a victory in the Junior World Championship series. The return of the three-time world champions to Mexico in 2016 will mark their 100th start in the World Rally Championship. Ogier/Ingrassia can look back on many successes in the place where it all began, and have won the last three editions of the Rally Mexico. Their achievement in 2015 will live long in the memory: a smart choice of tyre and outstanding navigational and driving skills ensured that they celebrated a triumph that many had thought impossible beforehand.

Mikkelsen/Jæger on the hunt for first place

The closest challengers to Ogier/Ingrassia are fellow members of the Volkswagen team: Andreas Mikkelsen and Anders Jæger are 23 points behind the reigning champions after the rallies in Monte Carlo and Sweden. However, the two Norwegians, who have only been racing together since the start of the season, also have what it takes to win. Andreas Mikkelsen tasted victory in Spain, in the last World Championship rally that took place on the kind of dry gravel surfaces that we will see in Mexico. The Norwegian also has a good record in Mexico and finished third there last season.

Chance to make amends – Latvala/Anttila with a perfect starting position

Two chances to make up lost ground: Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila are competing in the third Polo R WRC and aim to banish memories of a start to the season that has not gone as they had hoped. A starting position of eighth, which gives them the advantage over their team-mates, has done their chances no harm at all. Motivation and a desire to succeed will not be lacking as they look to improve on the zero points registered not just at the rallies in Monte Carlo and Sweden, but also in Mexico last year.

Matching their own record – extra motivation for Volkswagen on the way to Mexico

Unbeaten since the Rally Portugal in 2015 – eleven wins in a row. In Mexico, Volkswagen has the chance to extend that run of victories, having already triumphed in Portugal, Italy, Poland, Finland, Germany, Australia, France, Spain, Great Britain, Monte Carlo and Sweden. This would equal their own record, which was set between the Rally Australia 2013 and the Rally Finland 2014. To compare: the two longest winning runs were set by Volkswagen, with twelve and eleven consecutive victories, while the third-best record belongs to Citroën with eight wins in a row.

Quotes ahead of the Rally Mexico

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“The Rally Mexico will be the 100th of my career. A victory would be the best way to celebrate this but it will not be easy. I am really looking forward to the first gravel rally of the season. I have many great memories of Mexico and the fantastic fans there. My career began with a victory in the Junior World Championship here eight years ago – that was a dream come true for me. The last three visits to Mexico have been very successful for us. One of the key factors is the mountain air, and our Volkswagen Polo R WRC has always dealt very well with that. I hope that this will also be the case in 2016. Julien and I will not be over-confident and will be as focussed as ever when the rally begins.”

Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“Mexico will be the first gravel rally of the year and the surface is normally pretty hard. This is covered with a layer of finer gravel, which makes the surface as a whole very slippery. The surface becomes cleaner and faster as more cars drive over it. This means that it is an advantage to start the stages later – as long as it is not raining. That can happen in Mexico, but it’s relatively unlikely. I had some bad luck in Monte Carlo and Sweden. Of course, it looks bad when you have two poor results in a row, especially at the start of the season. However, I am trying to stay optimistic and I’m sure that things will go better for me now. The trophies will only be handed out at the end of the season! I’m hoping that the weekend goes smoothly in Mexico.”

Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“Although things didn’t go as planned for us in Sweden, I’m pleased with the season so far. Now we are off to Mexico – this rally is a great event and I am looking forward to driving on gravel again. Compared to last year, there are a few new special stages. “Guanajuato” on Sunday is 80 kilometres long. That will be a big challenge for us and also for the Polo R WRC. It is important to keep your energy levels up, to ensure that you can concentrate over such a long distance. I have never driven such a long special stage, but Anders and I are looking forward to it. The mountain air in Mexico is also a unique challenge. We are going to arrive early so that we have enough time to acclimatise ourselves.”

Number for the rally weekend in Mexico: 170

The Rally Mexico marks Miikka Anttila’s 170th outing as a co-driver in the World Rally Championship. This sees him become the third-most-experienced co-driver in rally history, after Denis Giraudet (181 starts) and Stéphane Prevot (173). Anttila will overtake one of the sporting greats in Mexico Daniel Elena, Sébastien Loeb’s co-driver, who has 169 starts in the WRC to his name. If Anttila goes on to contest the next eleven rallies in 2016, his total number of starts will also be 181 – the same number as Denis Giraudet. Incidentally, Miikka Anttila has contested 155 rallies alongside Jari-Matti Latvala.











André Dietzel
Media Volkswagen Red Bull Motorsport

Admin and Translation:

Media & Comunication Top Run Motorsport

Rally Report Magazine Argentina

Photo : @World / André Lavadinho

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Rally Report Magazine 16 Años




This post is also available in: English (Inglés) Deutsch (Alemán) Español





15 de Octubre 2016

La ilusión del cántabro Dani Sordo, del día de hoy, era mantener la lígera diferencia que cosechó ayer en la etapa de ripio mojado con algunos sectores con barro tripulando su efectivo Hyundai i20 WRC New Generation.

Pero hoy nada fue sencillo para el español, en primera instancia con problemas de subviraje en su unidad coreana armada en la factoría alemana de Alzenau, que le hicieron perder al término de la jornada valiosos segundos. Sin embargo, hay que decir, que el galo Sébastien Ogier realizó una remontada de aquellas, estableciendo cronos al más no poder, con un ataque frénetico sobre el piloto local de Hyundai, demostrando porque es el conductor de la especialidad del momento con casi cuatro coronas consecutivas en su haber, pilotando de forma perfecta el Polo R WRC junto a su amigo e inseparable navegante Julien Ingrassia. Descontando los 17 segundos que había de distancia entre ambos al finalizar el día inicial de tierra y ahora aventajando por 5.8 segundos contra la motivación intacta que origina Sordo, en el Rally de su casa, frente a su público y ante la gran oportunidad de cortar la racha negativa de no poder ganar en Cataluña.

En tercer escalón y en discordia se ubicó el belga Thierry Neuville, con el otro i20 WRC oficial de última evolución, con tiempos aceptables, pero lejos de Ogier y Sordo, y favoreciéndose, tras al abandono sorpresivo por vuelco del noruego Andreas Mikkelsen en la prueba especial 12, cuándo ocupaba la tercera plaza y tenía opciones de podio. Sin poder implementar su gran actuación del 2015, el rubio de Noruega, se va con las manos vacías de Salou.

En tanto que el fines Jari-Matti Latvala ha tenido un Rally para el olvido con el Polo R WRC número 2, con muchos inconvenientes, tanto en errores de conducción, con trompos, etc y pérdida de tiempo relevante en los varios pinchazos que lo consumió, quedando entre los 20 mejores clasificados al culminar este día sábado en PortAventura.

El “Kiwi” Hayden Paddon se recompuso de la mala puesta a punto del viernes y sostuvo un plan de trabajo constante a bordo de su i20 WRC, optando por la interesante cuarta posición, teniendo al británico Kris Meeke de la DS3 WRC by Abu Dhabi y al noruego Mads Ostberg de M-Sport entre el quinto y sexto puesto respectivamente, a sus espaldas, del talento de Nueva Zelanda, que se anima a decir, que sueña con el podio en suelo catalán.

Mientras que en la WRC2, las cosas están muy claras, solo una escuadra que domina a voluntad, los checos de ŠKODA, con sus dos estrellas que manejaron formidablemente sus Fabia R5, el experimentado Jan Kopecký y el sueco Pontus Tidemand. Que desde mañana buscarán el 1-2 fantástico para la marca que gestiona Michal Hräbanek y Pavel Hortek, desde su cuartel general ligado a Praga en Mladá Bolesvav.

Para finalizar dos cosas, los constructores M-Sport de Ford y Volkswagen Motorsport han confirmado que mostrarán próximamente a la prensa especializada a mediados del mes de diciembre sus nuevos autos de cara al revolucionario WRC 2017. Los esperados nuevos Fiesta RS WRC y VW Polo R WRC con las innovaciones aligeradas de las especificaciones que propone la FIA bajo la regulación WRCar 017 desde Montecarlo, la apertura central del Mundial en el año próximo.

54 – RallyRACC-Cataluña-Costa Daurada WRC 2016

Clasificación General Día 2

1-Ogier-Ingrassia-VW Polo R WRC – 2h.35m.12s.8/10 99.813 km/h.
2-Sordo-Marti-Hyundai i20 WRC New Generation -a 5s.8/10
3-Neuvile-Gilsoul-Hyundai i20 WRC New Generation -a 1m.03s9/10.
4-Paddon-Kennard-Hyundai i20 WRC New Generation -a 1m.20s.
5-Meeke-Nagle-DS3 WRC -a 1m.57s.9/10
6-Ostberg-Floene-Ford Fiesta RS WRC -a 2m.35s.7/10
7-Tanak-Molder-Ford Fiesta RS WRC -a 4m.24s.7/10

1-Kopecky-Dresler-ŠKODA Fabia 2h.42m.54s.4/10 95.138 km/h.
2-Tidemand-Andersson-ŠKODA Fabia-a 14s.3/10

All The Best, Pablito, Pablo MACHI WRC














Rally Report Magazine Argentina

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André Lavadinho / @World

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Rally Report Magazine 16 Años




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Rally de Córcega Día 1

Dani Sordo pierde opciones de podio en Córcega.

Cuando ocupaba la tercera posición provisional del Rally Tour de Corse, Dani Sordo se ha visto retrasado debido a un pinchazo en la última especial disputada hoy.

Sordo se ha visto apeado de la lucha por el podio por el que peleaba igual que en el pasado Rally de Alemania, y afrontará la segunda etapa de la prueba corsa en novena posición con el objetivo de llegar con el mayor número de puntos posibles el domingo a Porte-Vecchio, donde finalizará la presente edición del Rally Tour de Corse, décima prueba puntuable para el Campeonato del Mundo de Rallyes.

Dani empezaba la jornada acusando algo de subviraje en su Hyundai i20 WRC, a pesar de lo que marcaba el tercer mejor tiempo en la primera especial del día, Acqua Doria-Albitreccia, de 49,72 kilómetros. El piloto español del Hyundai Shell World Rally Team se iba encontrando más a gusto a medida que transcurría la etapa, pero pinchaba una de las ruedas traseras a pocos kilómetros del comienzo del último tramo cronometrado disputado hoy, perdiendo aproximadamente dos minutos: “Después de los tramos de la mañana me encontraba más a gusto con el coche, y he conservado los neumáticos en el primer tramo de la tarde de cara al último, pero he notado que el coche se movía de la parte trasera hasta que hemos comprobado que se trataba de un pinchazo y hemos tenido que parar a cambiar la rueda en pleno tramo. Ha sido decepcionante. No sé cómo ha ocurrido. Una pena, ya que nos encontrábamos en una buena tercera plaza. Intentaremos ganar alguna posición de aquí al domingo”, explicaba Sordo tras finalizar el último tramo disputado hoy.

Con salida y llegada desde Bastia, al norte de la isla, la jornada de mañana sábado será la más larga del Rally Tour de Corse y estará compuesta de dos bucles a los tramos La Porta-Valle di Rostino (53,72 kilómetros) y Novella-Pietralba (30,80 kilómetros).












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Home, speed home –
Ogier in a league of his own on day one of the Rally France.

Sébastien Ogier (F), Julien Ingrassia (F) Volkswagen Polo R WRC (2016) WRC Rally France - Corsica 2016 Photo: Bodo Kräling

Four stages, four fastest times – Ogier/Ingrassia open commanding lead on home soil
Latvala/Anttila and Mikkelsen/Jæger within touching distance of the podium in third and fourth

30th September 2016


Wolfsburg (30 September 2016). It doesn’t get any better than this. Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F) made a perfect start to the Rally France on Corsica in their Polo R WRC. The three-time world champions, who could claim the title for the fourth time in a row with victory at their home race – provided other results go their way – won all four special stages on the opening day of round ten of this season’s FIA World Rally Championship (WRC). Two of the duos out to prevent the Frenchmen from getting their hands on the title this weekend are their Volkswagen team-mates, who are also on course for success: Jari-Matti Latvala/Mikka Anttila (FIN/FIN) ended day one in third place, just ahead of Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jæger (N/N) in fourth. Second place after 157.68 of 390.92 kilometres against the clock is occupied by Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (B/B, Hyundai). While Ogier/Ingrassia opened a commanding lead of 44 seconds, just 15 seconds separate the chasing pack of three in their battle for second and third.

The opening day featured some typical Corsican special stages: narrow, winding roads and long sections put driver, co-driver and car through their paces in gorgeous autumn weather.

Quotes after day one of the Rally France

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“An ideal opening day for Julien and me – beautiful stages, superb weather and a perfect car. The key to stage one was to find our rhythm. Looking at the lead we opened, we appear to have done just that. It was pretty hot in the cockpit in the afternoon, particularly on the long 50-kilometre stage. We have a similarly demanding day ahead of us tomorrow, particularly if the weather deteriorates. However, we obviously want to continue as we were today, to make sure we win in the end. That is definitely the goal at our home rally.”

Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“We were a little too cautious at first, but gradually found our rhythm the further into the rally we got. We can make a few improvements here and there, for example when braking, but apart from that we are racing the right way for the Rally Corsica. That only makes the outstanding times set by our team-mate Sébastien Ogier all the more astonishing. Hats off to his performance. We will obviously try to stick with him tomorrow and on Sunday. If we can, we have a good chance of finishing on the podium.”

Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“We are not so much focusing on winning the world championship, but more on securing second place. With that in mind, we are going nicely in fourth place. I struggled to know how hard to brake in the morning. Unfortunately, we lost a lot of time as a result. Apart from that, though, it was a good day for us, but we have two more challenging days ahead to come.”

Sven Smeets, Volkswagen Motorsport Director
“We could hardly hope for a better start to the Rally France. Sébastien Ogier was clearly in a league of his own, while Jari-Matti Latvala and Andreas Mikkelsen are also well-placed. First, third and fourth is more than we had expected and hoped for. However, everyone in the team is well aware that we are only one third of the way into the rally and we still have a lot of work ahead of us. If we remain as focused as we have been so far, there is a good chance we will be rewarded with a strong result.”

And then there was …

… a little milestone. Andreas Mikkelsen is contesting his 75th rally in the World Rally Championship at the Rally France – the 45th with Volkswagen and the tenth with his co-driver Anders Jæger. The Norwegian made his debut at the 2006 Rally Great Britain. Since then, he has finished on the podium on 18 occasions, including victories at the 2015 Rally Spain and the 2016 Rally Poland – all with the Polo R WRC.

Standings after day two of the Rally France

01. Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F), Volkswagen, 1h 37m 52.8s
02. Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (B/B), Hyundai, + 44.0s
03. Jari-Matti Latala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN), Volkswagen + 58.0s
04. Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jæger (N/N), Volkswagen, + 59.3s
05. Craig Breen/Scott Martin (GB/GB), Citroën, + 1m 18.7s
06. Hayden Paddon/John Kennard (NZ/NZ), Hyundai, + 1m 26.2s
07. Eric Camilli/Benjamin Veillas (F/F), Ford, + 2m 00.7s
08. Elfyn Evans/Craig Perry (GB/GB), Ford, + 2m 36.3s
09. Dani Sordo/Marc Martí (E/E), Hyundai, + 2m 39.1s
10. Mads Østberg/Ola Fløene (N/N), Ford, + 2m 41.9s










André Dietzel
Media Volkswagen Motorsport

Admin and Translation:

Media & Comunication Top Run Motorsport

Rally Report Magazine Argentina

Photos: Hélena El Mokni / Daniel Roeseler / Kräling / Red Bull by Volkswagen Motorsport

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