WRC

Anna Duxbury  |    |   0  |  9 March 2019

Sebastien Ogier has taken advantage of Hyundai's misfortunes to grab Rally Mexico lead

Citroen's Sebastien Ogier has taken advantage of Hyundai’s misfortune to hold the lead of Rally Mexico after Friday's running.

Ogier sat in second behind Andreas Mikkelsen up until the opening stage of the afternoon when the Norwegian pulled his i20 to the side of the road and retired from the day.

Dani Sordo kept right on new rally leader Ogier’s tail, benefitting from his late running position due to it being his first appearance in the World Rally Championship in 2019 and there was less than two seconds between the pair after the second running of Ortega.

But Hyundai’s woes continued when Sordo stopped on the following road stage with an electrical fault.

Elfyn Evans sits in second place, almost 15 seconds behind Ogier, four of which were lost on the evening spectator stages where Evans was disadvantaged by running later than the reigning champion which meant he had to complete the stage in the dark.

Kris Meeke survived plumes of dust in his Yaris to hold third, ahead of Toyota team-mate Ott Tanak who struggled with the low grip he encountered as first on the road.

Esapekka Lappi sits in fifth with Thierry Neuville in the only surviving Hyundai 21 seconds behind after a puncture on the first running of El Chocolate on top of running near the front.

Neuville was disheartened by his Friday pace, declaring that there is “no chance for us to fight” for a strong finish at Rally Mexico.

In seventh is WRC2 leader Marco Bulacia Wilkinson ahead of Benito Guerra, Alberto Heller and Ricardo Trivino Bujalil.

Jari-Matti Latvala stopped on the road section on the way to the evening stages with an alternator problem and Teemu Suninen has retired from the event after his Fiesta became stuck in a banking after a crash on El Chocolate.

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