SS11: Ogier concedes defeat
Sébastien Ogier conceded defeat to Volkswagen team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala following the opening 22.07km test from Giulio Cesare to Mina Clavero (SS11).
In slippery, foggy conditions and run downhill for the first time since 2002, Ogier was 16.4sec slower than Latvala and the Finn extended his lead to 47.6sec in his Polo R.
“I never push in this stage. It’s a lottery in here so I prefer to just drive through. We can’t win all the time but I’m happy because this proves it’s not easy to win. Jari-Matti deserves it,” said Ogier.
Visibility for the opening 8km was poor but fog expert Mikko Hirvonen delivered a stunning performance in his Ford Fiesta RS. He was 36.4sec quicker than Andreas Mikkelsen to climb back into the points, and Latvala was the only other driver within a minute of him.
It was a nightmare for Mads Østberg as the pain from his injured right thumb continued to prove troublesome.
“I drove with one hand and it’s impossible on a stage like this. It’s hurting badly, so badly I’m not able to use it. I hit something under braking for a corner and went into some stones on the outside,” he said.
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