No, it did not take long at all. Sebastien Ogier lost his touch? Is he not interested in winning anymore? The time has finally come for Jari-Matti Latvala, Mads Ostberg and Andreas Mikkelsen to beat Ogier to a pulp? Because they finished in front of the Frenchman in Sweden. At least they, the doubters, did not mention Ogier and retirement in same sentence, but if Sebastien loses another rally, they might.
Silly ideas are silly, sometimes stupid, sometimes just… yeah. I know Jari-Matti, Mads, Andreas, Mikko and others need every bit of confidence they can get, but they also must remain realistic and not feed on stupidities. I am pretty sure they know how to filter out the good stuff from the lol stuff, and I am very much hoping that the people who are saying Ogier is done and dusted because he had two not-so-picture-perfect rallies so far this year (even though he actually won in Monte Carlo thanks to some superb driving), well, I hope they were joking. Since it’s totally impossible to talk about Ogier without comparing him to Loeb, do we really need to remind those doubters that even the mighty Loeb only managed 1 victory in Sweden. One victory and nine titles, and whoever did win in Sweden was surely high on confidence and full of “this is it now, boys, I’m starting my season FOR REAL now”. Yet, Loeb took nine titles.
I won’t cry and shout “Leave Sebastien alone” yet, but, leave Sebastien alone. Two upcoming rallies in Mexico and especially Portugal will give us a much clearer picture of what the 2014 might bring. Not to mention we will be four rallies down the road by then. Four events isn’t much in Formula 1, but it’s a lot in WRC. Ogier’s main rivals should first and foremost remain realistic and seek to beat the Frenchman by being consistent vs giving in to one event hysteria. They’re big boys, all of them, they know that very well.
TL;DR – Bring on Rally Mexico already!