Evans sets pace in Mexico shakedown
Tänak recovered from an early spin
Elfyn Evans maintained his impressive form by topping the times in Rally Guanajuato México’s shakedown on Thursday afternoon.
The Welshman, who leads the FIA World Rally Championship standings after victory in Sweden last month, carded the benchmark time through the 5.51km Llano Grande stage on his fourth and final run in a Toyota Yaris.
He ended the warm-up ahead of this evening’s start 0.6sec clear of Thierry Neuville’s Hyundai i20. Five-time rally winner Sébastien Ogier was third, a tenth of a second further back in another Yaris.
Finn Teemu Suninen was fastest through the opening run of the gravel road test in his Ford Fiesta, before Ott Tänak moved to the top of the rankings after the second pass. The Estonian earlier clipped a small tree stump, which threw his i20 into a half-spin.
After a return to service in León, Ogier lowered the best time further before team-mate Evans matched the Frenchman. While Ogier decided three runs was enough preparation, Evans went out for a fourth and set fastest time, with Neuville claiming second.
Kalle Rovanperä, driving a third Yaris, was fourth, 1.2sec adrift of Evans. Tänak and team-mate Sordo completed the top six.
Gus Greensmith stalled his Fiesta at the start of the first run and the young Briton also clipped a roadside barrier in his next attempt.
Ott in his Hyundai i20 during the first pass of shakedown
1. Elfyn Evans Toyota Yaris 3min41.8sec
2. Thierry Neuville Hyundai i20 Coupe +0.6sec
3. Sébastien Ogier Toyota Yaris +0.7sec
4. Ott Tänak Hyundai i20 Coupe +1.2sec
5. Kalle Rovanperä Toyota Yaris +1.2sec
6. Dani Sordo Hyundai i20 Coupe +2.6sec
7. Teemu Suninen Ford Fiesta +3.4sec
8. Esapekka Lappi Ford Fiesta +4.2sec
9. Gus Greensmith Ford Fiesta +4.8sec
10. Oliver Solberg Volkswagen Polo GTI +13.7sec
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