Volkswagen driver Sébastien Ogier and co-driver Julien Ingrassia (F/F) secured victory at the fourth round of the 2013 FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) season in Portugal. The duo finished the WRC Rally Portugal ahead of Mikko Hirvonen of Citroën as well as Volkswagen teammates Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN).
The team’s Polo R WRC first timers -- Andreas Mikkelsen and Mikko Markkula (N/FIN) – also managed to secure a sweet spot by placing sixth overall. Dr. Ulrich Hackenberg, member of the Board of Management for the Volkswagen brand, supervised the team during the racing event. Dr. Hackenberg, who is responsible for technical development, remarked that it was “great to be present at such a magnificent success.”
He added that he was very impressed by the manner in which the team earned success at the WRC Rally Portugal. He noted that it was “fantastic to see how well” the entire team is working together, providing support for their drivers.
The team’s strong performance at the WRC Rally Portugal in Algarve sent Volkswagen onto the summit of the Manufacturers’ Championship. Sébastien Ogier, on the other hand, saw his lead over his rivals in the Drivers’ Championship widen as he secured his third win of the current FIA WRC season. Considered as the second gravel rally of the 2013 WRC season, the Rally Portugal has proven to be quite a challenge for both the car and the driver.
The rally presented driving conditions that were considered the toughest so far this season, combined with narrow, winding passages on rough, stony surfaces alternating with fast sections. Despite suffering from illness going into the fourth rally of the season, Ogier managed to grab a slim lead at the end of day one. He extended his lead by grabbing four stage wins on Saturday and retaining lead until the finish line.