The “emotional rollercoaster” that left Ogier in tears on the Monte

As the rally ended, the Frenchman revealed why his weekend had been especially tough


Sébastien Ogier pulled into the stop line of stage five of the Monte Carlo Rally. As he spoke at stage end, his voice broke with emotion.

He’d won the stage by 11.2s, reminding everyone else that he was not to be written off. This is his turf; he can never be counted out of the lead fight.

“Looks like I’m still alive. Was struggling so far! I’m having a tough week but I try my best,” he said, on the verge of tears.

We’ve seen drivers visibly upset at stage ends before. But this was a different sort of upset. Not frustrated, not annoyed, as he’s sometimes been when it’s his competitiveness on display; something had happened before the rally that had shaken him and made him vulnerable in a manner rarely seen publicly.


Ogier finished the Monte 16.1s behind winner Neuville

At the finish line of the rally, Séb was ready to open up. He’d gotten through the rally and, while he hadn’t quite managed to pull off Monte win number 10, getting to the end in one piece while being visibly affected by emotion was tough enough in itself.

“For me, it’s been a tough week, big rollercoaster of emotion,” explained Ogier. “Friday was the toughest.

“It was hard to say goodbye on Monday to a person that was very important to me, who launched me in motorsport and offered me my first go-kart. It was so sudden and not the best timing – there is no good timing for that.

“I’ve thought a lot about him.”

Thierry Neuville went on to win the rally by 16.1 seconds ahead of Ogier, who just didn’t have quite enough to match the imperious pace of the Hyundai driver.

As Neuville joyously sprayed winners’ champagne, Ogier left his bottle of unopened out of respect.

A 10th Monte win would have been a fitting tribute. That he could concentrate well enough to have been in the fight until the very end was victory enough.