Saturday 24 January 2015

Rally - Polo domination

Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia go into tomorrow’s final day (Sunday) with a 42.8 second lead over Volkswagen team mates Jari-Matti Latvala and Miikka Anttila with Andreas Mikkelsen and Ola Fløene in third place a further 1:07.0 minutes back.

At the end of Day 3, Sébastien Ogier commented: “Conditions today were so varied that it made tyre selection difficult. Running on a crossover of slicks, winter tyres or spikes meant we were not able to enjoy the stages as much as we would have done otherwise. We spent the entire day on tyres that were the safest choice. That was definitely the right decision. Tomorrow’s schedule features another three stages, which we will treat with the same respect as today’s.”

Jari-Matti Latvala added: “Another successful day of rallying for us. The conditions were not easy for us today, and the tyre selection was made tricky again by the switching between dry asphalt and icy sections. However, our big advantage meant we were always able to play it safe. We may have cut Sébastien’s lead by a minute, but we will not be taking any unnecessary risks to try to challenge him.”

Andreas Mikkelsen said: “The choice to fit the supersoft slicks this morning was definitely not the fastest option. However, it was the safest. We still have three difficult stages to survive on Sunday. Ola and I will be fully focussed on them. Fortunately we can rely on our fantastic ice spies, who provide us with accurate information on the road conditions before we set off. It is also thanks to them that we are so well placed today.”

Leaderboard after 12 (of 15) stages:

1. Sébastien Ogier / Julien Ingrassia (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) 3:00:39.9
2. Jari-Matti Latvala / Miikka Anttila (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) +42.8
3. Andreas Mikkelsen / Ola Floene (Volkswagen Polo R WRC) +1:49.8
4. Mads Østberg / Jonas Andersson (DS 3 WRC) +2:42.8
5. Dani Sordo / Marc Marti (Hyundai i20 WRC) +3:16.1
6. Thierry Neuville / Nicolas Gilsoul (Hyundai i20 WRC) +3:20.8
7. Elfyn Evans / Daniel Barritt (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) +4:51.7
8. Martin Prokop / Jan Tomanek (Ford Fiesta RS WRC) +8:17.5
9. Sébastien Loeb / Daniel Elena (DS 3 WRC) +9:02.2
10. Kris Meeke / Paul Nagle (DS 3 WRC) +10:06.0

17, Craig Breen/Scott Martin (Peugeot 208 R5) +13:41.7

It wasn’t a good day for the rest of the boys over the water. Daniel McKenna retired on SS8 with mechanical problems in the Citroen and Eamon Boland went out in the very next stage with a mechanical failure problem in the Subaru.

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