Monte Carlo WRC: Ogier admits early error could've ended rally
|By David Evans||Tuesday, January 21st 2014, 13:55 GMT|
Monte Carlo winner Sebastien Ogier reckons his rally would have been over at the first corner but for Volkswagen's winter improvements to the Polo R WRC.
Ogier tested the strength of the 2013 World Rally Championship-winning car on the first corner of the opening stage last Thursday, when he hit a bridge and damaged the suspension.
"I have to thank the team," said Ogier.
"They worked so hard over the winer, we only had a very small gap - but they did a lot.
"They worked on reinforcing the arms and parts like this and maybe it was a good idea, otherwise it might have been the end of the race for us in the first stage."
Ogier's team principal Jost Capito agreed that the SS1 impact could have been terminal in 2013.
"I'm pretty sure that it we had not done that work then Seb would not have won the rally," he said.
Ogier eventually won the event by more than a minute, fighting back after dropping 1m19s by taking the wrong tyres on the opening day.
"It was a crazy day," he said, "we got the weather all wrong.
"After I had made my choice of tyres on the first morning, my Dad called and said: 'What are you doing? You are on slicks - are you crazy?'
"I told him: 'Thanks for that, but why ask me now!'
"I have to admit, we were lucky with this event."