Sébastien Loeb has done it, Juha Kankkunen has done it, Tommi Mäkinen has done it, and now Sébastien Ogier has done it: world champion, world champion, world champion and world champion. Four titles. In 2013, 2014, 2015 and 2016.
What makes this achievement all the more impressive is the fact that the four titles were won in just four years. Only legends Sébastien Loeb and Tommi Mäkinen had won four back-to-back titles before him. Sébastien Ogier’s latest success sees him join a very select group.
Going into the final day in Spain, it was apparent that one single point would suffice for title number four. As it turned out, Ogier wrapped things up in a manner worthy of a world champion, scoring not one point but 27 points at the last-but-two rally of the season. Seb has a history of securing the title with victory: the Frenchman was also crowned champion with a win in 2013, 2014 and 2015.
A long time ago: it was 9 March 2014 when Sébastien Ogier won the Rally Mexico to move to the top of the Drivers’ Championship - a position he has maintained ever since. 952 days had passed between that victory in Mexico and Sébastien Ogier’s fourth title win in Spain - and there are no signs of this spectacular run coming to an end anytime soon. Seb will continue to be top dog until at least the 2017 Rally Monte Carlo – by then, he will have amassed a remarkable 1048 days in a row at the top of the championship.
Saving the best till last: Sébastien Ogier comes alive when bonus points are up for grabs on the final stage of the rally. The Frenchman has so far won the Power Stage on 33 occasions. In total, he has amassed 121 bonus points.
Sébastien Ogier has 38 WRC victories to his name so far – an impressive figure. However, the number of wins in the Volkswagen Polo R WRC is even more impressive: 31 – from 52 rallies. As such, Ogier has won 60 per cent of the races he has started. Should he maintain this success rate for another year, he will move within sight of the seemingly unassailable record of 78 victories, held by his compatriot Sébastien Loeb. Ogier is already second in the all-time list of wins.
While Loeb’s record number of overall wins looks set to stand a few years yet, another record could fall in the not too distant future - the record number of world championship points scored. Ogier has so far amassed 1517 points over the course of his career – 108 fewer than his compatriot. As such, Seb could conceivably overtake Loeb in this regard next season.
Omelette for breakfast, champagne in the afternoon: Sébastien Ogier loves nothing more than to polish off a good omelette ahead of the day’s rallying - the perfect start to the day. His usual refreshing beverage of choice on the final day of the rally: champagne, as this is presented on the podium – where Seb is to be found more often than not. To be precise, he has taken his place on the podium on 56 occasions over the course of his career - 42 times in a Volkswagen overall.
Sébastien Ogier has won 479 stages in his career, 372 of which have come with the Volkswagen Polo R WRC.
From Australia 2013 to Monte Carlo 2014, and from Spain 2014 to Mexico 2015: Sébastien Ogier has twice put together a run of five victories in a row. Only Sébastien Loeb has enjoyed a longer run, winning six back-to-back rallies.
Titles, winning runs, points, podiums – Ogier’s statistics tell the story of the impressive dominance, which the Frenchman has enjoyed since switching to Volkswagen. Even more important to the Frenchman, however, is what happened to him away from the rally stages this year: wife Andrea Kaiser gave birth to son Tim, to whom Ogier dedicated his fourth world championship title after the Rally Spain.