WRC Montecarlo - Royal Battle went down to the wire! Our Votes
Updated: Jan 25
11 Rally1 cars, 18 Championship titles combined - Rally Montecarlo did not disappoint!
We have watched this amazing event and loved every single detail of these new cars and the way drivers embraced the new hybrid era.
We thought of sharing our 1 to 10 votes to the 11 drivers, with decimals, just for the fun of it.
Adrien Fourmaux - 5 out of 10 - Pity!
What a horrible crash in Stage 3! The team was at top pace until the went wide and flew out of the road. We are happy to see nobody was hurt. The 1 million euro car will be unfortunately irreparable and Adrien is fully aware of it. His redemption journey has started just now.
Ott Tanak - 4.5 out of 10 - (Lack of) Motivation
We love Ott and we want to see him fighting for the championship. However, you can see how incredibly fast he is but somehow it feels as if he is sitting on a comfort zone with no reason to push. We miss you, Ott. Please come back.
Oliver Solberg - 6.4 out of 10 - Impatient like Petter!
Being able to experience Monte with Rally 1 cars at this age makes him probably one of the most privileged drivers in the rally world.
Oliver, suffered throughout all weekend. He was able to get back on the road after a long shot on Friday and a few spins. He was very impatient and critic on himself, (like his dad), to a point his co driver told him to chill and to give himself time. Oliver did not finish the race but he managed to cover 90% of the rally. Experience
Elfyn Evans - 6.3 out of 10 - Fast but Clumsy
Elfyn finished the rally in 21st position, due to his major exit on Friday that cost him the podium. The pace was amazing but these mistakes are costly for a championship fight. He knows. Clumsy is the word he used on himself.
Takamoto Katsuta - 6.6 out of 10 - Step by Step
The Japanese driver can be happy about his performance. He is aware of the development path ahead of him, finding himself struggling in some corner exit a few times on the Friday stages. However, he showed great pace improvement at the end of the rally, finishing 8th. Keep going, Taka!
Thierry Neuville - 7.8 out of 10 - Warrior!
Finishing Monte with a healthy car is an incredible challenge. Finishing Monte with a very unhealthy car is almost impossible. He could have given up on Saturday due to a broken damper but instead he kept going and managed to get through 2 stages and 187km road transfer to service park. He was exhausted in the end but gained 6th position. Precious points.
Gus Greensmith - 7.6 out of 10 - Full GUS!
He found himself loving the car stage after stage until he got the best on Friday, winning his first rally stage, in front of Loeb and Ogier! Finished 5th overall! Way to go!!!
Kalle Rovanpera - 8 out of 10 - Toyota’s Frontman
Thursday and Friday were difficult for Kalle as he was not feeling confident with the car and lost chunks of time in the first 9 stages. His pace changed radically on Saturday and Sunday
He dominated the last stages as he subtly went Finnish on everyone and reminded that he is the one from Toyota going the championship fight this year. He finished 4th in the end, winning also the Power Stage, after Ogier's 10 seconds penalty. SISU revival!
Craig Breen - 8.3 out of 10 - Safe but effective
The approach from Breen was clear. His first event was about understanding the car and bringing points for M-sport. Considering that Loeb and Ogier were on a different league, he got himself the podium position. Plus, considering Loeb and Ogier are not fighting for the title this year, Breen was virtually the winner of the Rally. Well played.
Sebastien Ogier- 9.5 - the 0.5 is technically his time margin from victory.
He has driven alien mode the whole rally, pushing the car beyond the limit. He even had two major moments. On Saturday he extended his league to 20 seconds, which is nothing for a leading driver and too much a chasing driver. A slow puncture on stage 16 compromised his lead. Despite his massive effort on stage 17, an unusual jumpstart cost him 10 more seconds and ended the rally in 2nd place. He really wanted to win this one.
Sebastien Loeb - 10 - Living legend
What a performance from “the maestro”, who embarked on this project with M-Sport and snatched a great victory, at 47 years of age.
He teamed with Madame Galmiche, who has been testing with Loeb for more than ten years. She is a maths teacher by day and hero by hobby!. She was not only was able to orchestrate the notes amazingly, she was really calm and under control throughout the rally and having laughs with Loeb after each stage! Very inspiring!
Loeb used all his experience in each of the stage. He did not expect to win but neither he expected to slow down. That was key to his amazing victory against friend rival Ogier.
M-Sport - 10 out of 10 - The underdog that created a PUMA
The English team went through tough times to develop a competitive car and the results were clear. They are the team ahead and the car is very reliable and really fast.
Toyota GR - 8 out of 10 - Just behind the corner
The Japanese/Finnish team had reliable cars throughout the event. They can only get stronger from now on.
Hyundai - 6.2 out of 10 - Work to do
The car is clearly behind development compared to its rivals. They only brought three cars to the event. Neuville was scared of driving the car. Tanak could not find pace and the hybrid engine was not kicking sometime. Solberg had smoke coming in the car the whole rally. If it wasn’t for Neuville warrior effort, they would have not scored points this weekend.
Stage 13 was decisive for the lead as the two fighters, Loeb and Ogier found themselves starting last and just minutes before the stage, Mr. Ogier, who had opted for snow and studded tires, spotted Loeb option of putting soft tires and immediately changed his tires too, as he wanted to have a direct and equal fight with the Maestro. In the end, Ogier was the one who performed better and extended the lead to 20 seconds. Mr. Loeb could only applaude.