Finnish driver Mikko Hirvonen closed the gap on Sebastien Loeb at the top of the World Rally Championship standings after storming to the Australian title on Sunday.
Driving a Ford Fiesta RS, Hirvonen claimed his first WRC crown since the season-opening Rally Sweden after Jari-Matti Latvala slowed down to let his countryman and teammate take the lead on the penultimate stage.
Latvala finished runner-up to Hirvonen, giving Ford a tidy one-two finish.
Hirvonen's Rally Australia win, by 14.7 seconds, moved him to within 15 points of seven-time champion Loeb, who rolled his car on Friday.
"Unfortunately, Jari-Matti lost his chances of the title a few months ago and he’s helping me now," Hirvonen said.
"I appreciate it a lot because it helps me in the title fight. It’s a long way to go but I lost the title by one point (in 2009) so I know that every point counts."
Latvala said: "We decided as a team that Mikko has a better chance for the drivers’ championship so I wanted to support him.
"Of course every driver who wants to win needs to have a tactical approach. I needed to see the bigger picture and help the team."
Loeb, who rolled his car on Friday to crash out of contention for overall honours, finished 10th in his Citroen DS3 and claimed three bonus points for winning the last stage.
His Citroen teammate Sebastien Ogier also crashed on Friday, ending his hopes of adding the Australian title to his Rally of Germany win in August.
"I’m happy to score these few points but for sure I would have preferred to have scored more points in the rally," Loeb said.
"I tried to push very hard to see what we can do but I can’t be happy with this rally. It has not been good for me, my teammate or my team."
With three rounds remaining, Hirvonen has moved ahead of Ogier to second, while Ford has closed on Citroen in the manufacturers’ standings.
The championship now moves to the Rally of France from September 29 to October 2.