Sebastien Ogier has extended his World Rally Championship title lead with his fifth win in seven rallies at the Rally of Poland.
The 31-year-old Frenchman led the seventh round of the series from Friday afternoon, holding off Volkswagen Polo R teammate Andreas Mikkelsen of Norway to win by 11.9sec on Sunday after almost 300 kilometres of furious competition in very hot weather in north-east Poland.
“We have put together seven perfect rallies and, although it’s a bit early for predictions, I think I have taken a huge step towards a third title,” said two-time defending champion Ogier.
Ott Tanak prevented a Volkswagen podium clean sweep by claiming third in a Ford Fiesta RS, matching his career-best result and giving his manufacturer only their second podium finish of the campaign.
Jari-Matti Latvala crashed in the final stage while attempting to catch the Estonian.
It was Ogier’s 29th career success and took him to 161 points in the drivers’ standings, the sole driver in triple digits. Mikkelsen is a distant second on 83 points, with six races of the season remaining.