Sébastien Ogier

Sébastien Ogier (born 17 December 1983) is a French rally driver for Volkswagen in the World Rally Championship. He won the Junior World Rally Championship in 2008 and previously drove for the Citroën World Rally Team alongside Sébastien Loeb in 2011. His co-driver is compatriot Julien Ingrassia. With 13 victories in the World Rally Championship, he is the third successful French driver after Sébastien Loeb and Didier Auriol. He is considered to be the successor to Sébastien Loeb, whom dominated the sport until his departure in 2013.

Rally Career

Ogier at the 2008 Tour de Corse

Ogier was born in Gap, Hautes-Alpes. He won the French Peugeot 206 Cup in 2007 and moved to compete a full Junior World Rally Championship programme in the 2008 season, driving a Super 1600 -class Citroën C2 for the Equipe de France FFSA team. Ogier debuted in the World Rally Championship at the 2008 Rally Mexico, winning the JWRC class. After home country's Ricardo Treviño was disqualified for using non-homologated driving gloves, Ogier became the first JWRC driver to take a WRC point and eighth place overall. Ogier went on to take further junior category victories in Jordan and Germany.

At the penultimate round of the championship, the 2008 Rally Catalunya, Ogier was leading and about to secure the JWRC title when he hit a bank and broke his C2 S1600's radiator, forcing him to retire. Ogier then clinched the title by placing second at his home event, the Tour de Corse. After winning the JWRC title, Ogier was rewarded with his first World Rally Car drive in a Citroën C4 for Rally GB. He surprised the more experienced drivers by winning the first stage and taking a shock lead, but crashed out from eighth place on day two.
Ogier at the 2009 Monte Carlo Rally

In January 2009, Ogier made a one-off appearance in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, contesting the Monte Carlo Rally in a Peugeot 207 S2000. He took the lead when Škoda's Juho Hänninen picked up a puncture, and went on to win the event ahead of the 207s of Freddy Loix and Stéphane Sarrazin. For the 2009 WRC season, Ogier was signed by the debuting Citroën Junior Team, a satellite team of the Citroën Total works squad. He started his season with a career-best sixth place in Ireland and took his second points-finish with seventh in Argentina. At the Acropolis Rally, Ogier drove to his first podium place, finishing second to Ford's Mikko Hirvonen. This result also marked the first-ever podium for a non-works Citroën C4 WRC.
Ogier at the 2010 Rally Finland

In the 2010 season, Ogier continued in the Citroën Junior Team with the 2007 Formula One world champion Kimi Räikkönen as his new teammate. Ogier took his second podium in Mexico, completing a Citroën 1–2–3 by finishing narrowly behind Sébastien Loeb and Petter Solberg. At the Rally New Zealand, he led from Ford's Jari-Matti Latvala by 6.2 seconds before the final stage, but spun three corners before the finish and lost the win to Latvala by 2.4 seconds. Ogier went on to take his debut WRC victory in the next event, the Rally de Portugal, by leading from stage four to the end and finishing 7.9 seconds ahead of Loeb. Citroën then promoted Ogier to the factory team for the remaining three gravel rounds of the series. Subsequently, Dani Sordo replaced Ogier in the manufacturer's junior team, and after 2010 went on to leave Citroen to join the Mini WRC Team.
Ogier at the 2011 Acropolis Rally

Ogier was given a drive with Citroën's factory team for the full 2011 season and started off by finishing fourth in Sweden. He finished as the highest Citroën driver behind the Fords of Mikko Hirvonen, Mads Østberg and Jari-Matti Latvala, and became the first driver to win a Power Stage. After retiring in Mexico Ogier went on to win the next two rallies at Portugal and Jordan, with podiums at Argentina and Finland coming either side of a victory on the Acropolis Rally. Then, Ogier went on to claim victory in Germany. This was Ogier's maiden tarmac success in the WRC and the first time that his team mate Sébastien Loeb had been beaten in Germany.

Following a season in which relations between the two drivers deteriorated significantly, Ogier departed Citroën at the end of the 2011 campaign. He subsequently signed up to spearhead Volkswagen's WRC assault and contested the 2012 championship in a Škoda Fabia S2000 whilst developing the new Polo R WRC, before competing in the Polo R full-time in 2013. In December 2011, Ogier debuted in the Race of Champions at the Esprit Arena in Düsseldorf, Germany. He took the top step of the podium in the finals against Tom Kristensen, winning both heats and becoming the fourth Frenchman to win the title Champions of Champions.

In the 2013 season, Ogier became the second non-Nordic driver to win the Rally Sweden, after Loeb's victory in 2004. His win in Sweden was also the maiden win for the Polo R WRC.

In April 2013 Ogier won the Rally of Portugal, extending his lead at the top of the world championship standings.