The day of learning and dominating for Volkswagen Motorsport
Day two proper of 2013 Rally Mexico ended up with Sebastien Ogier dominating the scoreboard, while Jari-Matti Latvala was busy testing the car and it’s various configurations. At the same time, Finnish driver gained very valuable experience behind the wheel of a Polo R WRC.
Volkswagen had but one scare on second leg of the rally – on final “big” stage of the day Sebastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia ran into a closed gate on stage, losing 40 seconds as a consequence. Co-driver Ingrassia was able to open the gate and crew made it safely to the end of the stage. Later on, organizers reviewed GPS and video data and decided to reduce Ogier’s overall time by 40 seconds.
Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #7
“It was a good feeling to be back in action, after we were so unlucky in the first few metres yesterday. I coped excellently and feel really comfortable now in the Polo. I have adapted my driving style a little and am trying to drive even more accurately. As we are no longer able to affect the overall standings, we are using Mexico to prepare for the remaining gravel rallies, and have tried out various components and set-ups. In order to avoid spending the entire day out at the front and driving on loose gravel, we deliberately dropped down the starting order for the second stage of the day, although we knew we would have to accept a time penalty.”
Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #8
“That was an extremely good day for us. And we had a little shot of adrenalin at the end, when we suddenly had to slam on the brakes during a special stage to avoid hitting a closed gate. I hope we will be credited with the time we lost when the stewards have studied the footage from the on-board camera. I feel sorry for Mads (Østberg) after his retirement, as he had performed very well up until then and was our closest rival. However, that has obviously given us a more comfortable lead over the car in second. Although we did not take any risks today, we still won six of the seven special stages. To be honest, even I was surprised by that! Having said that, the Polo R WRC is simply perfect at the moment. There’s still one day to go, and tomorrow morning we have the longest and most difficult stage on the rally, so we must keep our concentration.”