Five-time world rally champion Sebastien Ogier completed the first full day of fighting in the season of 2018 in the leading position, but the next two days promise to be challenging for the Frenchman.
On opening two additional Thursday morning section and Friday the rider M-Sport Ford then controlled the race, went to the service Park with a lead of 40 seconds. But after lunch, CY7 – a 30-kilometer special stage Roussieux-Eygalayes, with the passage of the studs he flew into the ditch. Fans standing nearby, helped Ogier to get back on track, but the incident cost him half a minute.
On the final special stage of the day, Loeb lost five seconds to the nearest pursuer Ott Tanaka, so the second day it will start with a margin of 14.9 seconds.
«Difficult day. But we’re here at the finish line, and occupy a position of leadership, commented Ogier the end of the day. – If not a departure, our advantage would be a minute, but I’m still happy. Saturday will be very important to act well”.
Former partner of French M-Sport, Ott Tanak, too, can be happy, because the combat debut behind the wheel of the Toyota Yaris went beyond our expectations – DOPA and won two strong second place in the overall standings. Estonian is ahead by 44 seconds the owner of the third place of Dani Sordo and almost a minute ahead of teammates of Esapekka of Lapland and Jari-Matti Latvala, trailing the top five.
“The car works just perfect, – shared his impressions the bronze medalist of last season. – Nice to be so high and participate in this fight.”
The battle for third place also promises to be very interesting during the next two days – Sordo by ten seconds ahead of Lappi and Latvala, between which only 0.2 seconds.
Vice-champion of last year, Thierry Neuville throughout the day to make up for the time lost when departing on the first special stage on Thursday. The Belgian climbed from 17th to ninth place and lose two seconds Elvino Evans, whereas before briana buffie the remains of half a minute, while Chris Mika, reaching sixth, 1 minute and 20 seconds.
On Saturday participants of the Rally Monte Carlo are five special stages with a total length of 117,55 kilometers.
|1.||Sebastien Ogier||M-Sport Ford WRT||2:07.15,4|
|2.||Ott Tanak||Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT||2:07.30,3||+14,9|
|3.||Dani Sordo||Mobis Hyundai Shell WRT||2:08.15,1||+59,7|
|4.||Esapekka Lappi||Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT||2:08.25,3||+1.09,9|
|5.||Jari-Matti Latvala||Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT||2:08.25,5||+1.10,1|
|6.||Kris Meeke||Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT||2:10.00,9||+2.45,5|
|7.||Brian Buffie||M-Sport Ford WRT||2:10.50,0||+3.34,6|
|8.||Elfyn Evans||M-Sport Ford WRT||2:11.17,1||+4.01,7|
|9.||Thierry Neuville||Mobis Hyundai Shell WRT||2:11.19,5||+4.04,1|
|10.||Craig Breen||Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT||2:12.22,0||+5.06,6|
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