SS8: Dramas for VW lead duo
The statistics show that Jari-Matti Latvala won the second pass through the 39.99km stage from San Agustin to Villa del Dique (SS8) to extend his lead over Volkswagen team-mate Sébastien Ogier by 3.0sec. But…
Ogier spun at the muddy entrance to a watersplash near the midpoint, the same place that Mads Østberg had an overshoot and Thierry Neuville spun. The Frenchman lost a handful of seconds but worse was to come.
Just 1.5km from the finish the front left tyre on his Polo R began shedding its tread. The flailing rubber smashed much of the front left wing, but curiously the tyre remained inflated.
“It wasn’t a puncture. On the straight, the rubber went out but the pressure is still there. Perhaps something is wrong with the manufacture?” said the incredulous Ogier, who lost another couple of seconds.
Then Latvala arrived to tell of his dramas. “I spun, about 5km from the start, just after a hairpin. The car tucked into the corner and I spun. Then in the last 5-6km, coming into a bridge, I stalled the engine,” said the Finn, who nevertheless extended his lead to 24.2sec.
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