Despite having a year left on his deal with Citroën Racing, Sébastien Ogier has left the Citroën WRC squad, following which Citroën Racing announced its withdrawal from its WRC programme!
Citroën Racing had a two year-commitment with Ogier/Ingrassia and Lappi/Ferm for this year and next (2019 - 2020). Citroën claims the decision was taken to pull out because it now didn’t have a first-class driver to fight for the world title.
Citroën’s customer competition activity will be reinforced in 2020, with support and increased commitment towards C3 R5 customers throughout the world.
Citroën will reinforce its marketing focus on brand strategy with the launch of a new generation of electrified models from 2020.
Linda Jackson, Citroën CEO: “Following Sébastien Ogier’s choice to retire from WRC in 2019, Citroën Racing has also made the decision to depart from the programme. We obviously have not wished this situation but we could not imagine a 2020 season without Sébastien. I would like to thank Citroën Racing team for their passion and commitment. A part of Citroën’s DNA is intimately linked with rallying and we are proud to be one of the most titled brands in WRC History with 102 victories and 8 manufacturer titles.”
So whither Ogier? Looks like Toyota, and it looks like Elfyn Evans may well be joining him. But still, losing Citroën will be a blow to the WRC.