The five-time world rally champion Sébastien Ogier is one of the most successful rally drivers in a history. After winning his third world title in 2015, he left behind his back the legends of rallying Walter Röhrl, Miki Biasion, Carlos Sainz and Marcus Gronholm, who scored two titles each. A year later, Ogier clinched his fourth title and joined the company of Juha Kankkunen and Tommi Mäkinen, two flying Finns with four titles in their pockets. In 2017, Ogier clinched his fifth title. Now, the only one man is ahead, the nine-time champion Sebastien Loeb.
By the numbers of WRC victories Ogier is also the world's number 2. With current 40 wins he was far ahead of Gronholm (30), Sainz (26), Colin McRae (25), Makinen (24), Kankkunen (23) and other legends. Only Loeb's 78 victories seem to be uncatchcable.
Debuting years with Peugeot 206
Sébastien Ogier was born on December 17th, 1983, in Gap, France. His rally career began late, in 2005, when he won French Federation’s Rallye Jeunes selection competition. The victory assured him a position in the 2006 Peugeot 206 Cup in which he finished sixth, winning the Best Rookie award.
Ever since then, he is driving per instructions of his co-driver Julien Ingrassia. In 2007, Ogier and Ingrassia remained in the French Peugeot 206 Cup and won the title, with four wins and two more podiums in eight races.
Sébastien Ogier was 2008 Junior World Rally Champion
In 2008, Ogier replaced the Peugeot 206 XS with Citröen C2 S1600 and he entered Junior World Rally Championship. He impressed everybody at his first international event, at 2008 Rally Mexico. He was not only the winner in the Junior competition but he also scored points in the WRC competition, becoming the first JWRC driver to earn WRC points. He continued with impressive drives and scored two more victories in the Junior category, at Jordan Rally and ADAC Rallye Deutschland, to win the JWRC title.
Debut with C4 WRC at 2008 Wales Rally GB
After winning the JWRC title, Ogier was rewarded with a drive in the WRC car at the last event of the season Wales Rally GB. Ogier and Ingrassia competed with Citroen C4 WRC and again surprised everybody with the fastest time at the first special stage. He was leading until the fifth stage. He eventually crashed during the second day of the rally.
Victory at Rallye Monte Carlo
For 2009 season Sébastien Ogier signed with Citroen to enter their Junior team in the six rounds of the World Rally Championship, with rest of the season depending on his performance. To show his capability, Ogier started the year with a victory at the Rallye Monte-Carlo, which was a part of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge. Ogier was driving the Peugeot 207 S2000 and he dominantly won ahead of Freddy Loix.
First WRC podium for Sébastien and Julien at Acropolis Rally
In the WRC competition, Ogier scored points at two events before he achieved his first podium at Acropolis Rally. He finished second behind Ford's Mikko Hirvonen. After all, he participated in 12 WRC events with Citroen C4 WRC and finished 8th in the championship standings.
Maiden WRC victory at 2010 Rally Portugal
In 2010, Citroen again had two teams in the championship, with Sébastien Loeb and Dani Sordo in the leading team while Ogier and Kimi Raikkonen were the 'Juniors'. Ogier finished third in Mexico and second at New Zealand before he scored his first WRC victory at Rally Portugal. He was rewarded with a place in the main squad, switching the seat with Sordo at three events.
Last round retirement put him two places down
His second victory followed in Japan. Ogier had a chance to finish second in the championship, behind Loeb, but he retired at last round in Wales, so both Jari-Matti Latvala and Petter Solberg overtook him.
Five victories and 2nd place in the 2011 championship
In 2011, Ogier stepped up in the main Citroen's team, alongside Sébastien Loeb. They dominated in the championship with new DS3 WRC, winning five rallies both. Ogier won Rally Portugal, Jordan Rally, Acropolis Rally, ADAC Rallye Deutschland and Rallye de France Alsace.
Loeb was consistent in other events and he won his eighth consecutive world title while Ogier lost second place from Mikko Hirvonen. After some disagreements with the Citroen's management, Ogier lost his seat in the team and he was replaced by Mikko Hirvonen.
Learning with Škoda, testing with Volkswagen
After leaving Citroen, Sébastien Ogier opened the new chapter of his career by joining Volkswagen Motorsport, the team which was preparing its WRC programme for 2013. During 2012, he was testing the new Volkswagen rally car and driving Škoda Fabia S2000 in the championship.
Although he was driving the car which was less competitive compared to WRC machines, Ogier scored points in seven of twelve events and finished 10th overall in the final classification.
Fantastic debuting season for Volkswagen
Intense testing programme and all preparations resulted with a record-breaking debut season for Volkswagen Motorsport. Both the team and Ogier won the 2013 championship titles in a dominant way. Sébastien won nine of 13 events, collecting 290 points. His teammate Jari-Matti Latvala finished third, behind Ford's Thierry Neuville.
Ogier's second title and Volkswagen's 1-2-3 in 2014
In 2014, the domination continued and Volkswagen swept the championship with 12 victories in 13 rallies and three drivers on the top. Ogier was the winner eight times, Latvala added four wins, their teammate Andreas Mikkelsen finished third in the championship.
Volkswagen Polo was almost unbeatable
With an almost unbeatable car and undeniable driving skills, Sébastien Ogier continued to dominate and took the third consecutive title in 2015, again with eight victories. Latvala and Mikkelsen again were behind him.
The beginning of the season 2016 was victorious, with wins in Monte Carlo and Sweden. He continued to collect podiums but waited until August for his third victory, at ADAC Rallye Deutschland. Three more victories followed in France, Spain and Wales. He secured the fourth title after Catalunyan victory, two events before the end of the season.
Fifth world's title with M-Sport
At the end of 2016 season, Volkswagen withdrew from the World Rally Championship, leaving Ogier and his teammates without a seat. Of course, for the four-time world champion it wasn't a problem to find a new team. He decided to join Malcom Wilson's M-Sport World Rally Team to drive all-new 380-hp Ford Fiesta WRC.
Ogier has won the season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo and then Rally Portugal. He was consistent in reaching podiums, finishing seven more times in the Top 3 until the penultimate round in Wales, where he secured his fifth WRC title even before the season's finale in Australia. His main opponent Thierry Neuville was the winner three times but he ruined few good runs with retirements.
Ogier and his teammate Ott Tanak also secured Manufacturers' title for M-Sport World Rally Team, ten years after Ford's last title in 2007.
Champion of the Champions in 2011
Besides rallying, Ogier was a popular guest in many other racing competitions and show events, such was historic rallies. In some events, he participated together with his wife, TV presenter Andrea Kaiser. He participated in two races of the 2011 French GT Championship, two races of the 2011 French F4 Championship, two races of the 2014 ADAC GT Masters and two races of the Porsche Supercup in 2013 and 2014.
His most notable non-rally result was the victory at the 2011 Race of Champions, which was held at the Esprit Arena in Düsseldorf. In his ROC debut, Ogier won the event finale against Le Mans legend Tom Kristensen. He participated one more at ROC in 2012, when he reached the Nations' Cup's finale with Romain Grosjean and the quarter-finals in the individual races.