SS9 : Ogier snatches Finland lead
As Hirvonen goes fastest again
Sebastien Ogier has moved into the lead of Neste Oil Rally Finland after edging Citroen team-mate Sebastien Loeb on the repeat of the Hyvanuela test.
“It was another good stage time,” said Ogier, who was 1.1s quicker than Loeb through the stage to move 0.4s ahead of the seven-time champion at the top of the overall leaderboard.
“We pushed to the maximum because it was very difficult to make a difference. I am pleased with my performance. The car is working well.”
Loeb said: “It was raining a bit so it was less dusty. The grip was okay so it was not so bad in that stage.”
Finn Jari-Matti Latvala’s bid to win his home round of the world championship for a second time suffered a minor setback close to the start of the stage at the wheel of his works Ford Fiesta.
“I am running my car quite low and had a moment at the beginning of the stage,” said Latvala, who is now 7.2s off the lead. “The road was quite rutted and I hit the sumpguard and went into a ditch. I was a long time in there but luckily I came back on the road. I was a little bit worried and we have lost a bit [of time] but we have more stages to go.”
The recovering Mikko Hirvonen continued Ford’s dominance of stage wins on day two with the quickest time in his Fiesta. The Finn is 1m37.3s off first place.
Standings after SS9:
|01||S. OGIER / J. INGRASSIA||Citroën DS3 WRC||1h21m28.6s|
|02||S. LOEB / D. ELENA||Citroën DS3 WRC||+0.4s|
|03||J. LATVALA / M. ANTTILA||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||+7.2s|
|04||P. SOLBERG / C. PATTERSSON||Citroën DS3 WRC||+32.4s|
|05||M. ØSTBERG / J. ANDERSSON||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||+1m05.9s|
|06||D. SORDO / C. DEL BARRIO||MINI WRC||+1m29.2s|
|07||M. HIRVONEN / J. LEHTINEN||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||+1m37.3s|
|08||K. MEEKE / P. NAGLE||MINI WRC||+1m53.3s|
|09||J. HANNINEN / M. MARKKULA||Skoda Fabia S2000||+1m57.9s|
|10||H. SOLBERG / I. MINOR||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||+2m05.3s|
|11||M. WILSON / S. MARTIN||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||+2m16.9s|
|12||K. RAIKKONEN / K. LINDSTRÖM||Citroën DS3 WRC||+2m20.8s|
|13||M. PROKOP / J. TOMÁNEK||FORD Fiesta S2000||+3m07.3s|
|14||D. KUIPERS / F. MICLOTTE||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||+3m18.9s|
|15||A. MIKKELSEN / O. FLOENE||SKODA Fabia S2000||+3m52.3s|
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