Three WRC trophies for Volkswagen
Rally World Champions honoured in Paris
Glamour and glory for the three-time world champions: Volkswagen, Sébastien Ogier (F) and Julien Ingrassia (F) received trophies for their title wins in the World Rally Championship (WRC) at the grand award ceremony hosted by the FIA (Fédération Internationale de l’Automobile) at the world-famous Lido on the Avenue des Champs-Élysées in Paris. The trophies in the manufacturers’, drivers’ and co-drivers’ categories in the most prestigious production-based automobile world championship have therefore officially gone to Volkswagen for the third consecutive year. The Polo R WRC likewise made a grand appearance in front of the event’s 2,000 guests. The movers and shakers of the world of motorsport all marvelled at the 318 hp World Rally Car which has won 34 of the 39 rallies it has tackled to date, making it the most successful model in the history of the WRC. Awards were presented not only to the world champions Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia (F/F), but also to their Volkswagen teammates Jari-Matti Latvala/Miikka Anttila (FIN/FIN) and Andreas Mikkelsen/Ola Fløene (N/N), who came second and third respectively overall in the 2015 WRC.
“The grand FIA gala is always the icing on the cake at the end of a long and arduous year,” says Volkswagen Motorsport Director Jost Capito. “No other motorsport world championship has such a long season as the WRC, which runs from January to November. And nowhere are the technical and sporting challenges greater than in the WRC, with rallies held on gravel, asphalt, and ice and snow. It’s a great relief and a fantastically proud feeling to accept the trophies for the manufacturers’ championship and for the top three positions in the drivers’ and co-drivers’ championships too. We can look back on our most successful season to date in the World Rally Championship, but are also already in the midst of preparing for the next season, which starts six weeks after the FIA gala with the first special stage of Rally Monte Carlo.”
Because it’s so good: Volkswagen’s impressive track record in the World Rally Championship
13 rallies and 26 podium finishes, twelve of which were the top spot – the 2015 season goes down in history as the most successful season to date for Volkswagen in the World Rally Championship. Each of the three driver/co-driver pairs won at least one rally and clinched a podium position at least seven times. 159 out of 231 possible stage fastest times were also scored by Volkswagen drivers, as were twelve of the possible 13 power stage wins. The three Polo R WRC cars notched up a total distance of 11,832.08 kilometres at high speed in 2015. And Volkswagen has scored an unparalleled set of top results since it joined the World Rally Championship with the Polo R WRC: 34 out of a possible 39 rally wins, the longest run of consecutive wins by far (twelve), and the two most successful seasons for a manufacturer, with twelve rally wins in both 2014 and 2015. Volkswagen drivers have stood on the podium 67 times, and one of the Volkswagen duos has been fastest in 504 of the 717 special stages held since Rally Monte Carlo in 2013 and has been among the top three on 1,192 occasions. A Volkswagen duo came first in 31 of the 38 power stages, in which the top three duos score bonus points in the drivers’ and co-drivers’ categories, and bonus points went to Wolfsburg factory-backed drivers and co-drivers 69 times, taking the total to exactly 150 bonus points – which is equivalent to six rally wins.
49 days to go until the ‘Monte’ – preparations for the 2016 season under way
There are just 1,173 hours between the season’s closing gala and the first special stage of 2016: the 2016 WRC season gets under way with Rally Monte Carlo on 21 January. The new season comprises 14 rallies – China joins the 13 host countries familiar from 2014 and 2015, becoming the fourth overseas event in addition to the ten European venues. Volkswagen is once again entering with Ogier/Ingrassia, Latvala/Anttila and Mikkelsen/Fløene, and therefore with three Polo R WRC vehicles as usual.
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