Citroen driver Sebastien Loeb won the Rally of Great Britain in Wales to clinch the World Rally championship for the sixth straight year
In the 12th and last race of the season, Ford's Mikko Hirvonen was within 18 seconds of overnight leader Sebastian Loeb after winning the first two special stages on Sunday.
But the bonnet of his car burst open on the next special as it went over a bumpy rise, ruining his chances of a win. The Finn had to rip the bonnet off to continue racing.
That allowed Loeb to stretch his lead to 1 minute 25 seconds after the 15th special stage at Port Talbot with just 22km to cover in the final special to retain his world title by a slim margins of one point.
"It's been an incredible season," said Loeb. "We made a good start then we lost everything and we came here one point behind Mikko. Finally we've done it and I'm really happy but Mikko has been extremely strong. I know it will be tough next year for sure.
"This has been one of my best title wins; the battle was so intense - going almost until the end of the last rally. It was incredible. We have had some highs and some lows this year but we finished with the victory. It's an incredible feeling!" he added.
The GB success was Loeb's seventh win of the season and the 54th of his career.