Volkswagen and Sebastien Ogier continue to rewrite the record books after another dominant year in the FIA World Rally Championship.
Australia’s round of the championship at Coffs Harbour in NSW has now been run and won, and it was the Volkswagen pair of Ogier and co-driver Julien Ingrassia in the Polo R WRC who again took home the silverware.
With the Rally Australia victory, Ogier has now secured enough points to claim his third WRC in a row, with Volkswagen also wrapping up the constructor's title in the latest round.
The French driver was 12.3 seconds clear of teammate and fellow Volkswagen driver Jari-Matti Latvala, with Citroen’s Kris Meeke rounding out the podium a further 20.3 seconds behind.
The 2015 Rally Australia victory marks the 31st of Ogier’s career, and a third WRC crown sees the driver join the likes of Carlos Sainz, Juha Kankkunen, Tommi Makinen and Sebastien Loeb as a multiple WRC champion.
“So far it’s an amazing season - it’s the best I’ve ever done,” Ogier said.
“It was for sure the most difficult rally to open the roads, so it’s perfect to get this win for the third time. On paper this one was impossible to win, so is a very beautiful result.”
Kris Meeke expressed relief after taking his Citroen DS 3 to a third-place finish with co-driver Paul Nagle, later saying the podium finish was “just what I needed” to pick up a season which currently sees him sitting sixth in the overall points tally.
Rally Australia is already locked in for the next two years, with dates for the 2016 event to be confirmed soon. Almost 55,000 fans attended this year's event.
Three rounds remain in the 2015 WRC series, with the next round to take place at Tour de Corse Rallye de France, beginning October 1.
Results - 2015 Rally Australia
- S Ogier/J Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) 2:59:164
- J-M Latvala/M Anttila (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) +12.3
- K Meeke/P Nagle (Citroën DS3 WRC) +32.6
- A Mikkelsen/O Floene (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) +38.5
- H Paddon/J Kennard (Hyundai i20 WRC) +55.o
2015 FIA World Rally Championship - Drivers
- S Ogier - 235 points
- J-M Latvala - 134
- A Mikkelsen - 111
- M Østberg - 90
- T Neuville - 86
- K Meeke - 71
2015 FIA World Rally Championship - Manufacturers
- Volkswagen Motorsport - 343 points
- Hyundai Motorsport - 177
- Citroen Total Abu Dhabi World Rally Team - 164
- M-Sport World Rally Team - 148
- Volkswagen Motorsport II - 76