One more than announced: WRC legend Sebastien Ogier will contest both Rally Spain and Rally Japan for Toyota
Eight-time World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier will contest six rallies during the 2022 World Rally Championship (WRC) after all. The French rally legend will not only contest the WRC round in New Zealand at the turn of next month, but also the subsequent two rounds in Spain and Japan.
Ogier shared the Toyota GR Yaris Rally1 with Finn Esapekka Lappi during the season. He scaled back his rallying activities for 2022 to spend more time with his family.
He also wanted to concentrate on sports car events in the World Endurance Championship (WEC). But he ended that programme with the 24 Hours of Le Mans. The WEC season finale in Bahrain would have clashed with the Rally Japan, which is also the WRC finale.
New Zealand will be his fourth outing, so together with Spain and Japan that makes six rallies. That’s one more than Ogier originally announced.
“As everyone knows, I am very excited to go to New Zealand,” said the 38-year-old. “But what is new is that I will also be competing in Spain and Japan. It’s the last three rounds of this championship, so I’m looking forward to this new challenge,” he said.
Ogier’s previous three outings at Rally Monte-Carlo, Rally Portugal and Safari Rally have earned him a podium finish as runner-up in the opener, although he had victory on his heels. He retired in Portugal and finished fourth in Kenya.
Surprisingly, Esapekka Lappi’s season is already over. His future in rallying is currently open. Toyota WRC boss Jari-Matti Latvala would like to keep his compatriot.
Lappi finished on the podium three times in his seven events (Sweden, Finland and Ypres). In Greece, he retired from the race in second place due to fuel pressure problems.