Belgian Thierry Neuville is leading the Greece rally this Friday ahead of Sébastien Ogier.
The Belgian Thierry Neuville (Hyundai) occupied the lead of the Greece rally on Friday evening, 10th event out of 13 in the WRC world championship, ahead of the Frenchman Sébastien Ogier (Toyota) and Finland’s Kalle Rovanperä (Toyota), provisional leader of the championship. After six of the fifteen stages of the event, Neuville is closely followed by Ogier, in ambush at only 2.8 seconds, while Rovanperä, the reigning world champion, is left behind and has 25.5 seconds of disburt on the leader .
Briton Elfyn Evans (Toyota), winner of the last rally at the start of August in Finland and who came back 25 lengths from the Finn in the championship, is in fourth place 31 seconds behind Neuville.
The Belgian, third less than half a second behind Rovanperä on Thursday evening, took control of the Acropolis Rally from the second special and kept them at the end of the fifth and last timed zone of the day.
Ogier in ambush
If he was the fastest during SS 3, Rovanperä lost a lot of time afterwards, starting with SS 4 won by Ogier, who is in good shape for his comeback after having skipped the two last races. The Finn, however, remains ahead of his main opponent for the title, his teammate Evans, who has 25 points less than him in the provisional clification of the championship.
The Estonian Ott Tänak (M-Sport / Ford), victim of a water pump problem which made him lose almost four minutes, let off steam on the track by setting the best times of SS 5 and 6, but he is relegated to more than 3.30 minutes from the lead and has probably said goodbye to victory in the land of the Gods. His French teammate Pierre-Louis Loubet had mechanical problems with his Ford Puma and couldn’t even start the first special of the day. He was forced to quit.
On Saturday, six new specials will be on the program representing more than 141 timed kilometres.
Clification of the Greek rally, 10th round of the WRC world championship, at the end of the 6th special on Friday:
1. Thierry Neuville/Martijn Wydaeghe (BEL, Hyundai) 55:10.4
2. Sébastien Ogier/Vincent Landais (FRA, Toyota) at 2.8
3. Kalle Rovanperä/Jonne Halttunen (FIN, Toyota) at 25.5
4. Elfyn Evans/Scott Martin (GBR, Toyota) at 31
5. Esapekka Lappi/Janne Ferm (FIN, Hyundai) at 32.1
8. Ott Tänak/Martin Järveoja (EST, M-Sport/Ford) at 3:34.5
Main retirement: Pierre-Louis Loubet / Nicolas Gilsoul (FRA-BEL, M-Sport / Ford).
Special stage winners: Kalle Rovanperä (SS1, SS3), Ott Tänak (SS5, SS6), Thierry Neuville (SS2), Sébastien Ogier (SS4)