Rally Argentina

21 – 24 April 2016


Red-hot coverage, exclusive background reports, interviews, the latest photos – simply everything on the 2016 Rally Argentina. You are always up to date here.

Tuesday, 26/04/2016

The most spectacular water passages of the Rally Argentina (13)

Sunday, 24.04.2016

Three dramatic days in Argentina. The video.

Best images of the day (12)


Excitement right down to the wire: Podium for Volkswagen.


Sébastien Ogier against Hayden Paddon, Volkswagen against Hyundai. This was the duel that dominated the Rally Argentina. Both drivers were embroiled in a relentless duel for the lead, right down to the very finish. Seb was gunning for his first victory in Argentina, Paddon for his maiden WRC win. In the end, it was Paddon who finished with his nose in front. Congratulations! The duel was a fantastic advertisement for the World Rally Championship.

Volkswagen may not be leaving South America with a victory to its name, but the Wolfsburg car maker did finish second and third to score valuable points. Third place came courtesy of Andreas Mikkelsen, who once again produced a flawless rally.

Seb Ogier once again spearheaded the Volkswagen contingent, following Jari-Matti Latvala’s crash on Saturday. The Frenchman had struggled at times with some challenging route conditions on the opening two days, but really found his rhythm on Sunday and set about closing the gap to Paddon. A real thriller was unfolding.

Seb clocked the fastest time on the penultimate special stage, from Mina Clavero to Giulio Cesare, and took a full 19.8 seconds out of Paddon’s lead in one fell swoop. However, Hayden hit back on the Power Stage, setting the fastest time to finish 14.3 seconds clear of Ogier. Third place on the closing stage did mean an extra world championship point for Ogier. Super Seb will once again be a man with a mission when he returns to South America next year: victory in Argentina.

Quotes from the Volkswagen Team

“Respect for that performance.”

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“It is not usually a good feeling for a driver to be beaten by an opponent. This time, however, it is easier to accept. Hayden and I had exactly the same conditions out on the route: he went absolutely all-out on the Power Stage, and was simply better. Respect for that performance. For me, this will serve as a great motivation to once again give it my all at the coming rallies, in order to get back on the top step of the podium. The stages were extremely difficult and rough, which is possibly why I did not risk everything. Second place is still a fantastic result for Julien and me. We have extended our lead in the world championship standings.”


Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“No question: to retire whilst leading is bitterly disappointing. This is not what we had in mind for the Rally Argentina. We hit a rock on the 14th stage of the rally, which broke something on the car and ended up with us rolling. However, despite our disappointment, the priority today was to help the team. My mechanics put in a remarkable effort to get the Polo R WRC back in the rally, and I wanted to reward them for that with some Manufacturer points today. A track rod broke on the Power Stage, but we still made it to the finish and picked up two points.”


Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“We had a plan from the outset, and stuck to it – and it paid off. As such, I am more than happy with third place – after all, this is my first podium finish here in Argentina. We expected the rally to be extremely tough, and that proved to be the case. The route was very rough. In places it was even more extreme than last year. We are proud to have mastered the rally and come away with third place. After leaving Mexico empty-handed, it was important to score points.”


Jost Capito , Volkswagen Motorsport Director
“WRC rallies do not get more exciting than that – the Rally Argentina was a fantastic advertisement for our sport. Despite an outstanding effort from Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia, they came up just short. Congratulations to Hayden Paddon and John Kennard, who were worthy winners. However, we are not in the slightest disappointed: as well as Sébastien and Julien, Andreas Mikkelsen and Anders Jæger also did everything right in third place. Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Anttila were unlucky to hit a rock whilst leading yesterday. The impact broke something on the car and resulted in it rolling. Thanks to the impressive efforts of our mechanics, they were able to re-join the race today and score points towards the Manufacturers’ World Championship.”

Final classification after 18 stages

Position Driver / Co-driver Total Time / Diff 1st  
1 H. Paddon / J. Kennard 3h 40m 52.9s  
2 S. Ogier / J. Ingrassia +14,3s  
3 A. Mikkelsen / A. Jæger +1m 05.2s  
4 D. Sordo / M. Martí +1m 17.1s  
5 M. Østberg / O. Fløene +4m 56.7s  
6 M. Ligato / R. García +9m 29.5s  
7 T. Neuville / N. Gilsoul +9m 39,2s  
8 H. Solberg / I. Minor +10m 16,0s  
9 E. Camilli / B. Veillas +10m 48.5s  
10 N. Fuchs / F. Mussano +24m 42.8s  

Number of the day



The Volkswagen mechanics were presented with an enormous to-do list: a completely new tailgate, front and rear shock absorbers, bonnet, front windscreen, both mirrors, left and right fenders, all the antennas, and a new underride guard – on the outside. Seats, seat rails, harnesses, new HANS systems and helmets, front wishbone, front track rod, a complete rear axle, new cardan shafts, water cooler and intercooler, replace all the top mounts and shock absorbers, replace all the wheel mounts, drive shafts and wheel arch liners – on the inside of the Polo R WRC. Thanks to the joint efforts of the Volkswagen team, who repaired the Polo R WRC within the maximum three hours allowed, the Finnish duo were able to re-join the race on Sunday and to pick up two points towards the Manufacturers’ Championship.

Sunday: the special stages of the third day.

Saturday, 23.04.2016

Best images of the day (11)

Day recap

Ogier and Mikkelsen take on the record attempt.


“Latvala is off.” Three words that silenced fans of the Finn in the Volkswagen Motorsport team and his crew back in the service park in Villa Carlos Paz. Just like in Mexico recently, Jari-Matti Latvala and his co-driver Miikka Anttila had delivered an almost perfect performance in Argentina, and after 13 difficult special stages, had built up a lead of 14.5 seconds at the top of the overall standings, ahead of their rivals Hayden Paddon and John Kennard (Hyundai). Then came the 14th stage. Just after the half-way point of the 38.68-kilometre special stage, Jari-Matti and Miikka came off the track and damaged their Volkswagen Polo R WRC so badly that they were unable to continue. The team and fans were in a state of shock. Fortunately, Jari-Matti and Miikka came away unscathed.


This saw Paddon and Kennard move to the top of the overall standings, and they will start the final day of the Rally Argentina, on which just three stages and 55.28 timed kilometres are scheduled, with a lead of 29.8 seconds over Sébastien Ogier/Julien Ingrassia in the second Volkswagen Polo R WRC. So now it’s to the three-time World Rally Champions from Volkswagen to continue the current Wolfsburg winning streak and clinch the 13th WRC victory in a row. This would see Volkswagen unbeaten in an entire year, as well as around the world – a new historic record. Andreas Mikkelsen/Anders Jaeger in third place are also still contenders in the hunt for the record. They trail their fellow Volkswagen drivers Ogier/Ingrassia by 14.5 seconds, and Paddon/Kennard by 44.3 seconds. 


The Volkswagen record hunters are faced with no easy task at the Argentina finale on Sunday. But it’s not impossible. One thing is for certain: The final day of the Rally Argentina will be a nail-biting affair.


The fastest news from the track is on Twitter as usual @VolkswagenRally

Quotes from the Volkswagen Team

“Miikka and I are well.”

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“Tomorrow’s ‘Mina Clavero’ stage is definitely the hardest stage of the Rally Argentina, if not the entire world championship. The conditions are extremely tough for the car and the tyres. That is not the moment to risk everything. Especially as Hayden Paddon has done a good job so far, and it would not usually be possible to make up 30 seconds. My priority is to secure second place, then I can look forward to getting home soon. Jari-Matti’s retirement is obviously a great shame for our entire team, as we really wanted to win here.”


Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“First things first: Miikka and I are well. We will, however, be taken to hospital for a check-up – just to be on the safe side. We were actually having a good day. We had a good rhythm and had not had any problems. We hit a rock on stage 14 and came off the road. We then rolled several times. We obviously could not continue the rally after that. Whether or not we are able to return under Rally 2 regulations tomorrow depends on the doctors’ decision and the state of our car. The crash is naturally very disappointing, but it also showed just how safe the Polo R WRC is.”


Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“The news of Jari-Matti Latvala’s retirement is obviously not what we wanted to hear. He produced an extremely strong performance and thoroughly deserved to be leading with a healthy advantage. It is a shame he can no longer win the rally. My co-driver Anders and I have come up with a strategy here, which we have stuck to consistently. We have set a high, but safe pace. Our priority is to score points towards the championship. Third place stands us in good stead for tomorrow’s finale, which we are very much looking forward to. We have never made it onto the podium here before. That is something we are obviously determined to change now.”


Jost Capito , Volkswagen Motorsport Director
“A day of highs and lows for Volkswagen. Jari-Matti Latvala had established a good advantage and deserved to be leading the rally. Unfortunately, he hit a rock on the penultimate stage of the day – that was really unlucky. Sébastien Ogier made the most of the day, and could still challenge for the win if he produces an outstanding performance tomorrow. Andreas Mikkelsen has paced himself intelligently and deservedly finds himself in third place. The fans can look forward to an exciting finale on Sunday – the ‘El Condor’ and ‘Mina Clavero’ stages are far from a stroll in the park. This rally is not over yet. We will push hard tomorrow.”

Classification after 15 of 18 stages

Position Driver / Co-driver Total Time / Diff 1st  
1 H. Paddon / J. Kennard 2h 54m 45.6s  
2 S. Ogier / J. Ingrassia +29.8s  
3 A. Mikkelsen / A. Jæger +44.3s  
4 D. Sordo / M. Martí +1m 02.0s  
5 M. Østberg / O. Fløene +3m 46.2s  
6 M. Ligato / R. García +8m 13.1s  
7 T. Neuville / N. Gilsoul +8m 17,9s  
8 H. Solberg / I. Minor +8m 17,9s  
9 E. Camilli / B. Veillas +9m 00.3s  
10 J. Latvala / M. Anttila +13m 39.8s  

Number of the day



Number new team members added during Rally Argentina. Gordo is the name of a dog that has not left the Volkswagen Motorsport team ever since its arrival in Villa Carlos Paz. Ogier, Latvala, Mikkelsen? Gordo does not seem to favour any of the Volkswagen drivers in particular. The faithful quadruped has already stopped by Ogier's engineers, took a power nap in front of Latvala’s car and served as the dutiful watchdog on Mikkelsen’s parking spot in the service park. Therefore Gordo was now awarded with an honorary Volkswagen membership.

Midday report

Latvala vs. Paddon: breathing space for Jari-Matti.


The Rally Argentina could hardly be more exciting. Two thrilling battles have developed within the top four. The first is the battle for the lead between Jari-Matti Latvala (Volkswagen) and Hayden Paddon (Hyundai). The two ace rally drivers are taking no prisoners on the demanding gravel roads in Argentina. Momentum has swung one way then the other on the first three special stages of the day.

At the end of Friday’s leg, it looked like being an all-Volkswagen tussle between Latvala and Sébastien Ogier. However, Paddon produced an excellent time on Saturday morning to put himself firmly in contention. The New Zealander raced to two great times on the gravel on stages ten and eleven, pulling ahead of Ogier and suddenly finding himself hot on the heels of Latvala. All at once, he trailed JML by just 6.7 seconds.

However, Jari-Matti is not easily ruffled, and knew exactly how to respond. He clocked an impressive time on the final stage of the morning, from Boca del Arroyo to Bajo del Pungo, taking 6.6 seconds out of Paddon in one fell swoop. After twelve stages, Latvala again holds a relatively comfortable lead of 13.3 seconds. “It is nice to have extended my lead again,” said a visibly happy Jari-Matti after the stage. “I know it is still very close and that nothing has been decided yet. However, that’s why we love rallying, isn’t it?” Yes, that is exactly why!

Behind Latvala and Paddon, Volkswagen drivers Ogier and Andreas Mikkelsen are fighting it out for the third spot on the podium. Andreas has gradually been eating away at Ogier’s advantage. Over the course of the first three stages on Saturday, he has reduced the gap from 18 to 7.4 seconds. The morning’s three stages will be run again in the afternoon, and there is still plenty of life left in the battle at the top of the standings.

You can find the latest information on the Rally Argentina at Facebook.com/VolkswagenMotorsport or on Twitter @VolkswagenRally.

Standings after SS 12:

1. Jari-Matti Latvala (Polo R WRC #2) 2:10:42.1 hrs
2. Hayden Paddon (Hyundai) +13.3 sec
3. Sébastien Ogier (Polo R WRC #1) +45.6 sec
4. Andreas Mikkelsen (Polo R WRC #9) +53.0 sec
5. Dani Sordo (Hyundai) +1:13.1 min

Saturday: the special stages of the second day.

Friday, 22.04.2016

Best images of the day (16)

Day recap

Latvala leads – three-way battle makes for thrilling drama.


More excitement? Not possible! The spectators were treated to the whole shebang on day one of the Rally Argentina, not far from Córdoba. Featuring: Jari-Matti Latvala and Sébastien Ogier from the Volkswagen team, and Hayden Paddon (Hyundai). The three driver duos in the top three spots of the overall standings are separated by around just eleven seconds at the end of day one; so the stage is set for a thrilling weekend.


Slippery gravel passages and dense fog in parts in an autumnal Argentina didn’t exactly make things easy for the drivers, but Latvala – at an advantage with a starting position slightly further down the field – knew what was required. “The car feels fantastic,” said the Finn, who picked up a total of four best times and heads into day two with a tight lead over his closest rivals.


This includes Paddon. The New Zealander also benefited from a higher start number and staged a fierce battle with Ogier for second place. Ogier slightly edged it at the end of day one, and pushed the New Zealander into third place by 3.5 seconds.


One man’s joy is another man’s sorrow: Ogier must have initially had a feeling of déjà vu on Friday. The world champion was the first driver to take to the track and, just like at the first gravel rally of the year in Mexico, played road sweeper for the entire field. Which made the Frenchman’s performance all the more impressive; he clinched the best time on the second special stage first thing, which also saw him take the lead. Ogier held his ground on the following stages, but could only watch as Latvala caught up second by second, and then went on to take the lead after the fourth special stage.


The third member of the Volkswagen posse, Andreas Mikkelsen, was slightly more cautious, but not much slower. The Norwegian remained unscathed and is lying in wait in fourth place. He is less than half a minute off the top, so is also a force to be reckoned with at the weekend when the podium positions are being awarded.


Around 158 classified kilometres are scheduled for Saturday; the Volkswagen Polo R WRC’s performance so far will inspire confidence in the team of Volkswagen Motorsport Director Jost Capito. The Volkswagen Polo R WRC has clinched seven of a total of nine best times at the Rally Argentina so far, and thanks to three drivers in the top four, the record of 13 victorious rallies in a row is still achievable.

Quotes from the Volkswagen Team

“We were right at the limit.”

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“Julien and I couldn’t get any more out of today - we were right at the limit. I’m very pleased with what we achieved. To be honest, I expected to lose more time to the top at the start of the rally. Which is why I wasn’t feeling very optimistic at the lunch break. However, the conditions in the afternoon were better than I thought they would be. The track profiles are spectacular and so much fun. And the Polo R WRC was on top form. Julien and I will give it our all to be in with a chance of getting our first win in Argentina right down to the wire.”


Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“I am very pleased with the first full day here in Argentina. The main thing was to get a feel for the conditions and slowly pick up the pace. I built up a small lead stage by stage. We’ll try to continue this tomorrow. My team-mate Sébastien Ogier and Hayden Paddon in the Hyundai are really fast and it is an exciting competition. Nothing is decided yet, but like I said, I am really pleased with the first day.”


Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“I purposely started the Rally Argentina cautiously and always gave myself a bit of breathing space. I have always been fast here – but I’ve not managed to avoid setbacks on my four starts so far. Naturally I want to change that this time. I like the stages, and am enjoying the tracks – particularly because my Polo is set up perfectly and is running like clockwork. We’ve laid a good foundation for a top result today and are in with a chance of finishing on the podium.”


Jost Capito , Volkswagen Motorsport Director
“Friday in Argentina showed just how exciting the WRC is. A closely fought manufacturer’s battle has developed between Volkswagen and Hyundai, and Latvala, Ogier and Paddon are embroiled in a thrilling three-way driver's battle. There's no way of telling who is going to come out on top in the end. But we are not only in a good position with Jari-Matti and Sébastien, there’s Andreas Mikkelsen too. Like his team-mates, he has adopted a clever, forward-looking and fast pace, and is ready to pounce on a podium position. Everyone in the team will be on high alert for the rest of the rally to make sure things continue to go so well.”

Classification after 9 of 18 stages

Position Driver / Co-driver Time / Diff 1st
1 J. Latvala / M. Anttila 1h 26m 31.3s
2 S. Ogier / J. Ingrassia +7.9s
3 H. Paddon / J. Kennard +11.4s
4 A. Mikkelsen / A. Jæger +25.7s
5 D. Sordo / M. Martí +49.0s
6 M. Østberg / O. Fløene +2m 07.9s
7 H. Solberg / I. Minor +4m 04.4s
8 E. Camilli / B. Veillas +5m 33.8s
9 M. Ligato / R. García +6m 05.1s
10 T. Neuville / N. Gilsoul +7m 34.4s

Number of the day


No other day of the WRC’s fourth round of the season is holding more stages. Although there are fewer stages on Saturday (just six), the number of timed kilometres is bigger. 157.82 kilometres must be tackled on Saturday again only 150.08 kilometres on Saturday.

Midday report

At the top with a broad grin.


Another big grin on his face, totally relaxed once again: Jari-Matti Latvala has every reason to be happy at the lunch break of day one at the Rally Argentina. The Volkswagen driver was the fastest to manoeuvre his Polo R WRC over the gravel tracks around Córdoba on Friday morning after the city's streets kick-started the rally with a big party and a spectacular spectator stage on Thursday evening.

“My Polo is doing fantastically on the track, I am very happy with how things have gone so far,” said Jari-Matti at the end of the fifth special stage, on which two cars competed against each other on parallel tracks. He defeated Hayden Paddon in the Hyundai in a head-to-head.
Team-mate Sébastien Ogier won the first stage of the day. He struggled a bit with the conditions. “There was quite a bit of water on the track on the final stage," said Ogier. "The fact that I had to take to the stage first was not advantageous.” Seb will have the opportunity to make up for lost time in the afternoon. He isn’t far off: In third place, he trails Latvala by 6.9 seconds. Paddon separates them.
Andreas Mikkelsen is currently in fourth in the third Polo R WRC; a podium position is within reach. The Norwegian is currently 9.9 seconds behind team-mate Ogier. The morning’s four stages will be driven a second time on Friday afternoon. For all of the latest information, see here, Facebook.com/VolkswagenMotorsport, or Twitter @VolkswagenRally.

Status after SS 5:

1 Jari-Matti Latvala (Polo R WRC #2) 44.07.8 min.
2 Hayden Paddon (Hyundai) +5.4 sec.
3 Sébastien Ogier (Polo R WRC #1) +6.9 sec.
4 Andreas Mikkelsen (Polo R WRC #9) +16.8 sec.
5 Dani Sordo (Hyundai) +30.2 sec.

Friday: the special stages of the first day.

Thursday, 21.04.2016

Best images of the day (11)

Day report

Ogier makes best start after the WRC spring break.


The six-week enforced break from the WRC circus finally came to an end for fans, drivers and teams with the start of the Rally Argentina on Thursday evening. Returning after the spring break, Sébastien Ogier was the fastest Volkswagen driver to find his rhythm on the opening stages. Cheered on by tens of thousands of fans lining the 1.5-kilometre sprint stage in Córdoba, Ogier finished with the exact same time as Dani Sordo (Hyundai) to lead the Volkswagen contingent of three Polo R WRCs. Andreas Mikkelsen clocked the 11th fastest time while Jari-Matti Latvala finished the day in 12th place.


Ogier, Latvala and Mikkelsen had previously warmed up well in the Shakedown. Latvala was second, Ogier third and Mikkelsen fifth. Following the obligatory warm-up, the Rally Argentina really gets going on Friday. Eight special stages are scheduled for the first full day of the rally, with exactly 150.08 kilometres against the clock to master. In total, the WRC drivers must overcome 364.68 kilometres spread over 18 special stages in Argentina.


Volkswagen has the opportunity to make WRC history in Argentina. Having won the last twelve rounds in a row, a 13th success would set a new record: Volkswagen would become the first manufacturer in the pinnacle of international rallying to go an entire year – once around the world  undefeated. Championship leader Ogier is first driver onto the second stage at 08:18 local time (UTC -3) on Friday. You can find all the latest information here, at Facebook.com/VolkswagenMotorsport or on Twitter @VolkswagenRally.

Classification after 1 of 18 stages

Position Driver / Co-driver Time / Diff 1st
1 S. Ogier / J. Ingrassia 1m 29.0s
2 D. Sordo / M. Martí +0.0s
3 O. Tänak / R. Mõlder +0.1s
4 T. Neuville / N. Gilsoul +0.3s
5 H. Paddon / J. Kennard +0.7s
6 L. Bertelli / S. Scattolin +1.5s
7 M. Østberg / O. Fløene +2.1s
8 E. Camilli / B. Veillas +2.8s
9 N. Fuchs / F. Mussano +3.1s
10 E. Evans / C. Parry +3.3s
11 A. Mikkelsen / A. Jæger +3.4s
12 J. Latvala / M. Anttila +3.8s

The first special stage in Argentina.

Monday, 18/04/2015

"Around the world in 13 victories" – Volkswagen out to make history.


The seven-week break in the World Rally Championship is over. The action returns, as Argentina plays host to the WRC. This is a very special rally for Volkswagen: not only does the Wolfsburg-based group enjoy a huge fan base here, but it can also make history in South America.

Volkswagen has won twelve rallies in a row, spanning the last two seasons. The last time the successful team did not finish on top of the podium was at last year’s Rally Argentina. Back then, Kris Meeke was victorious in his Citroën. Success at the fourth rally of the year would see Volkswagen complete a winning run that has taken the team once around the world. To steal a title from Jules Verne: “Around the world in 13 victories”.

The hot favourite for victory is once again reigning world champion and championship leader Sébastien Ogier. The Frenchman is even more motivated than usual, as he has – believe it or not – never won in Argentina. In 2014 he finished runner-up behind team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala. Andreas Mikkelsen is also determined to improve his record in Argentina. The Norwegian has always looked good at the gravel rally around Córdoba, but he has never finished higher than fourth. In 2015 he first suffered a puncture before his Polo R WRC hit a rock and crashed out on the closing Power Stage.

In order to be on top of their game, the Volkswagen drivers have not only prepared physically with an extensive fitness programme, but have also enjoyed a deserved break. Sébastien Ogier and Andreas Mikkelsen went skiing, while Jari-Matti Latvala covered the equivalent of two rallies on a snowmobile. Mikkelsen also flew to sunny Thailand for a few days before decorating his apartment in Monaco. This way, the drivers were able to clear their heads in order to be ready and raring to tackle their next challenge.

The drivers must indeed be ideally prepared physically and mentally for the Rally Argentina. This year’s itinerary features 18 special stages and exactly 22.8 per cent of the 364.68 kilometres against the clock are completely new. The popular Mina Clavero stage returns to the schedule, as does Los Gigantes, parts of which were last driven in 2012. A number of stages will be tackled in the opposite direction to previous years. An additional challenge for the drivers and co-drivers. Also new is a spectacular opening stage on the streets of Córdoba. A great addition for the fans.

As well as the demanding gravel stages, the weather will also play a major role in Argentina. Not only can it rain at this time of year in Argentina, which would soften the sandy gravel, but it can also be extremely foggy. This can limit visibility for the drivers, particularly on Sunday’s iconic El Condor stage, thus making a difficult stage even more challenging.

Number for the rally weekend



Probably the fastest globetrotter in the world: the Polo R WRC has so far covered enough distance at rally speed to travel around the world almost exactly once. Ahead of the fourth round of the WRC in Argentina, the Polo R WRC had completed exactly 39,063.05 kilometres of special stage since the start of the Rally Monte Carlo in 2013.

For comparison: the equator is 39,985.42 kilometres long. As such, with Ogier, Latvala and Mikkelsen set to cover a combined distance of 922.37 kilometres in Argentina, Volkswagen could have completed enough kilometres to travel once around the world.

After the spring break between overseas rallies in the World Rally Championship, the car from Wolfsburg can certainly claim to be a real globetrotter, with 43 rallies to its name. The 2016 World Rally Championship will take place in 15 countries on five continents.

Quotes from the Volkswagen Team

“I like the mix of old and new stages.”

Sébastien Ogier, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #1
“The Rally Argentina is the only rally on the calendar that Julien and I have not yet won. This year will not be easy either, because we will once again be the first car onto the route. Whatever happens, I will do my best to improve my record here and to win the rally for the first time. Julien and I have had a great season so far. We have always achieved the best possible result. With this in mind, I am very optimistic about Argentina. However, the weather can be very tricky. Thick fog often restricts visibility, which is not very pleasant for a racing driver. As far as the surface is concerned, we must adapt from Mexico, as the gravel is much softer and the ground far sandier. That requires a different driving style.”


Jari-Matti Latvala, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #2
“After the victory in Mexico I had the feeling that we had finally arrived in the season. We must now carry this momentum on to Argentina, in order to ensure we continue to move in the right direction there. I will approach Argentina in exactly the same way as Mexico. Starting sixth generally gives you a little advantage – if the stages remain dry. There are more special stages this year than last year. But they are a bit shorter. I like this concept. I also like the mix of old and new stages. About a quarter of the route is completely new. We need new pace notes for this, but that goes for every team. I am most looking forward to the ‘Mina Clavero’ stage on Sunday, which was last part of the route in 2013.”


Andreas Mikkelsen, Volkswagen Polo R WRC #9
“Last year I was really unlucky in Argentina. First a puncture developed into a far larger problem and cost us a lot of time. Last but not least, we had to retire on the Power Stage following a collision with a rock. One thing is certain: I have set my sights on finishing on the podium here. However, that will not be easy, as the rally consists of a lot of new special stages. Unlike Mexico, the surface in Argentina is relatively soft and sandy. As such, deep ruts form quickly in the gravel. I really like the Rally Argentina, even though it is not easy. It is a nice place. I have always been quick there, but have never achieved a good result yet. That has to change this year.”


Jost Capito , Volkswagen Motorsport Director
“There is no question about it: when you have achieved a run like this and have the opportunity to put the icing on the cake, you are particularly motivated. Once around the world without a single defeat – that is something that no manufacturer has ever achieved in the World Rally Championship. However, we are going about this task in an extremely calm and meticulous manner – as we do at every round of the world championship. We know that the last time we were not successful was in Argentina, so we need to raise our game. However, I am 100 per cent certain that everyone in the team will do their very best.”

Sunday, 17/04/2016