VW’s WRC season draws to a close with 12 wins


E4---VW-WRC20151124Twenty-six podiums from 13 rallies, including 12 wins – the 2015 season will go down in the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) history books as Volkswagen’s most successful to date.

Three-time world champions Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia claimed their eighth win of the season with the World Rally Car from Wolfsburg. Andreas Mikkelsen and Ola Fløene finished third to round off a positive end to the season. This was their ninth podium of the year – only Ogier and Ingrassia racked up more.

The closing Power Stage went to Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Anttila both from Finland in the third Polo R WRC, who came away from an otherwise difficult rally with three bonus points – enough to secure second place in the World Championship. In extremely tricky conditions in the Welsh forests, 15 of a possible 19 stage wins went to Volkswagen. This took the total to 504 of 717 stages since the 2013 season.

The Rally Great Britain formed an extremely challenging end to the WRC season: gale-force winds, torrential rain and the typical, ubiquitous Welsh mud awaited the drivers on the 19 special stages. The 309.87 kilometers race against the clock really put the world’s best rally drivers through their paces. The ever-changing grip levels meant the crews had to be on the ball at all times – despite marathon days with special stages from the daybreak into the night. The Rally Great Britain in the north of Wales also posed a challenge for the Volkswagen mechanics: Storm Abigail tore through the service park in Deeside, making life difficult for the Volkswagen technicians, particularly during the flexi service on Saturday evening.

Volkswagen celebrated reaching yet more milestones at the Rally Great Britain. With 34 of a possible 39 victories, the Polo R WRC remains the car with the highest win ration in the history of the World Rally Championship. The 318-horsepower World Rally Car from Wolfsburg also racked up stage win number 500 in Wales. After three full seasons, Volkswagen has now won 504 of the 717 special stages since the Polo R WRC made its debut at the 2013 Rally Monte Carlo. Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia also passed a personal milestone: victory in Wales was the 32nd of their careers, the 25th in Volkswagen colors, and also yielded stage win number 400.

The Rally Great Britain formed the final round of the 2015 World Rally Championship, which was held on gravel, asphalt, snow and ice on four continents. Over the course of the season’s 13 rallies, the Volkswagen drivers covered 11,832.08 kilometers at rally speed on 231 special stages, held between sea level and altitudes of up to 2,752 meters above sea level. Starting mid-January and ending mid-November, the WRC year is the longest in the world of motor sports. And there is no let up for the Volkswagen team between seasons: it is now just 60 days until the first stage of the Rally Monte Carlo, which forms the opening leg of the 2016 season.


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