Sebastien Ogier holds seven World Rally Championship titles. He has the “best co-driver out there” and the Frenchman himself is one of the most successful rally drivers! Ogier’s retirement makes headlines, but it would not be a clear truth. Will Sebastien continue his racing career in 2022? As he exchanges the warmest tribute posts on social media with co-driver Julien Ingrassia, well-known media speculate ahead of the crucial Rally Spain.
Sebastien Ogier will actually race in 2022
Sebastien Ogier has announced that he will retire from a full-time program and participate in selected races next year. At the heart of his decision to retire from the race was to spend more time with his family. Frenchman Ogier will continue to work for the Toyota Gazoo Racing Team, but the terms of his contract will change. Meanwhile, the team has not specified which races Sebastien Ogier will participate in.
The schedule of events is not clear yet, but I will do my best to help the team in the manufacturers’ championship and to develop the car. I’m excited to see what this new generation of cars bring to the sport and I know the team is putting a lot of effort into it
Julien Ingrassia and Sebastien Ogier
Ogier is moving from full-time to part-time and is not just racing in the World Rally Championship. His co-driver Julien Ingrassia changed his plans to create clear prospects for the future. Ingrassia will retire at the end of this season. It is worth mentioning that Julien has been going through fire and water with Ogier since 2006.
Dirtfish summed it up and made it clear that the connection between Ogier and Ingrassia is so incredibly stable. They have the strongest partnership in the current championship. Ogier has questioned whether he would have been so successful if Ingrassia hadn’t sat by his side all those years. This is very likely, but the fact that Ogier himself questions it shows how much Julien played a role during their time together. Next year Benjamin Veillas will replace Julian Ingrassia as the new co-driver on a part-time basis at Toyota. Newcomer already knows Sebastien well because they worked closely together during the tests.
WEC, LeMans, WRC, FIA?
A part-time job will enable the rally champion to compete in various challenges. Wherever Sebastien Ogier races, sooner or later he will finish in the top 5. Perseverance, diligence and razor-sharp intellect make him unique and successful. He invests the maximum and demands the same from others without excuses.
Option 1 – WEC races
Sebastien Ogier had long ago decided to test his endurance in the WEC, namely at the 24 Hours of Le Mans. As a Citroen rally driver and due to the busy schedule of the WRC, he did not have this opportunity. However, Toyota Gazoo Racing under the leadership of Jari-Matti Latvala will give the opportunity to try his hand at a long distance race. Definitely, this point is part of the contract of the Frenchman.
Option 2 – WRC racing
There is no point in leaving a career as a WRC rally driver to a world champion. Here, too, the new contract has several advantages. Sebastien Ogier wins time by choosing which races he will take part in. Thus, the legendary dream of every rally driver – the Monte Carlo Rally – is on the agenda. The Frenchman will take part in Monaco, albeit with a new co-driver.
Option 3 – FIA
Rumors abound that one of the top priorities in Sebastian Ogier’s plans for 2022 is to gradually move into the FIA’s administrative work. Time will tell whether this is true or not. His experience and the most objective view of racing give the full right to use the strength for the good of motorsport in the FIA.
When Sebastien Ogier has made a decision, it is almost always the most thoughtful step in advance. It is hard to imagine the most profitable continuation of a career, because it is only subject to Ogier. Sometimes it seems that if he had planned to take part in the Formula 1 Grand Prix, he would have undoubtedly succeeded there, too.
We wish Sebastien Ogier and his co-driver Julien Ingrassia the coveted eighth title, which would be an ideal reward in the 2021 WRC season.