SÉBASTIEN Ogier clinched a fifth consecutive FIA World Rally Championship at Dayinsure Wales Rally Great Britain on Sunday afternoon.
Third place at Dayinsure Wales Rally GB in a Ford Fiesta guaranteed the crown for the 33-year-old Frenchman and co-driver Julien Ingrassia, whose private M-Sport World Rally Team secured the manufacturers’ title for the first time since 2007.
The event win also went to M-Sport, Elfyn Evans claiming an emotional maiden victory on Welsh home soil. Evans set fastest time on nine of the 21 stages and held an unchallenged overall lead since stage two on Friday morning.
Evans became the first Briton to win the four-day rally since 2000, heading Thierry Neuville’s Hyundai i20 by 37.3sec. Ogier was a further 7.9sec behind.
After winning the past four years with Volkswagen, Ogier’s GB triumph saved him having to face a title decider in the WRC finale at Kennards Hire Rally Australia on the NSW Coffs Coast on 16-19 November.
Neuville won the final live-TV Power Stage to claim five bonus points. Kris Meeke took four points for second in a Citroën C3 with Jari-Matti Latvala claiming three points in third position for Toyota.
Dayinsure Wales Rally GB (round 12 of 13):
1 Elfyn Evans/Daniel Barritt (Ford Fiesta WRC) 2h57m00.6s
2 Thierry Neuville/Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +37.3
3 Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrasia (Ford Fiesta WRC) +45.2
4 Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jaeger (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) +49.8
5 Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (Toyota Yaris WRC) +50.3
6 Ott Tänak/Martin Järveoja (Ford Fiesta WRC) +1:02.3
7 Kris Meeke/Paul Nagle (Citroen C3 WRC) 1:20.5
8 Hayden Paddon/Sebastian Marshall (Hyundai i20 Coupe) +2:16.3
9 Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm (Toyota Yaris WRC) +2:46.5
10 Dani Sordo/Marc Marti (Hyundai i0 Coupe WRC) +3:50.5
2017 FIA World Rally Championship for drivers after round 12:
1 Sebastien Ogier 215
2 Thierry Neuville 183
3 Ott Tanak 169
4 Jari-Matti Latvala 136
5 Elfyn Evans 118
6 Dani Sordo 95
7 Juho Hänninen 71
8 Kris Meeke 70
2017 FIA World Rally Championship for manufacturers after round 12:
1 M-Sport World Rally Team 398
2 Hyundai Motorsport 305
3 Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT 241
4 Citroen Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team 210