World champion Sebastien Ogier capped his title-winning season with another victory at the Wales Rally on Sunday.
The Frenchman claimed his ninth win of the year ahead of Volkswagen teammate Jari-Matti Latvala. Thierry Neuville, in a Ford, ended third, a result that allowed the Belgian to finish runner-up in the overall standings.
Ogier clinched his first world title in front of his home fans last month at the Rally France.
On the slippery roads of Wales, he took the lead in Thursday’s opening stage then weathered the repeated attacks from Latvala, a two-time winner of the race.
“I’m so happy, and big thanks to the team once again, the car was perfect,” Ogier said. “I came here knowing this rally was not the best for me in the past, and even with that we managed to win a battle with a teammate who feels at home here. It was another great victory for us and the end of a perfect season. It’s going to be a hard challenge to do better next year.”
Latvala finished 21.8 seconds behind Ogier and Neuville lagged 1 minute, 2.7 seconds behind.
“I’m really, really happy with (second overall),” Neuville said. “It’s a result we couldn’t have imagined at the beginning of the season, with a new car and new team.”