Sebastien Ogier won the Monte-Carlo Rally on Sunday, his 39th race win and a first for his new team, M-Sport.
It was the 33-year-old Frenchman’s fourth consecutive win in an event he has said is his favourite of the season.
Ogier finished two minutes, 15 seconds in front of Finland’s driver Jari-Matti Latvala and three minutes ahead of Estonia’s Ott Tanak, who suffered engine problems. Ogier has won the last four world titles and is now targeting his fifth.
Mr Ogier praised his team on Twitter: “To win with @MSportLtd at the 1st race after 1 month of preparation is amazing! Thank you so much to the team, you deserve this victory” added, “It doesn’t mean the season will be easy, we know we have to keep working hard, but at least we start with a lot of points so we’re happy!”
The competition was marred by the death of a spectator during the opening stage, hit by a car that left the road. According to police reports the man had been standing in a forbidden zone.