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Ogier takes initial lead on Rally Mexico
7 March 2013
Volkswagen's Sebastien Ogier has taken the early lead on Rally Mexico following the short opening two tests this evening.
Ogier, who was only fifth in qualifying after opting for the harder tyre, was fourth fastest through SS1, the 1.05 km Guanajuato test, before then setting the pace in SS2, beating Mikko Hirvonen by 0.1 seconds.
He now heads into the overnight halt with a slender 0.3 second margin over Mads Ostberg.
Thierry Neuville meanwhile, who was quickest in SS1, is third overall, 0.3 seconds off Ostberg, with Hirvonen, the pace setter in qualifying, fourth.
Dani Sordo and Chris Atkinson round out the top six, the latter surviving a scare when he clipped a kerb inside the Guanajuato tunnel.
Further back, Nasser Al-Attiyah, Evgeny Novikov, Jari-Matti Latvala and Benito Guerra hold positions seven through to ten, ahead of Michal Kosciousko and Ken Block. Latvala stalled at the start of SS2 and finished up six seconds slower than his team-mate and early leader, Ogier through the 2.60km Parque Bicentenario test.
In WRC2, Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari is top in his Ford RRC, 5.6 seconds up on Nicolas Fuchs. Yuriy Protasov is third.
Rally Mexico now gets underway 'proper' on Friday, with SS3, El Cubilete 1, due to start at 07.23 hours local time [13.23 hours UK time]. Friday's action includes eleven stages in total. Rally Mexico: Overall standings after Stage 2 (Top 10):
1. Sebastien Ogier
Volkswagen Motorsport Polo R WRC 3mins 19.5secs
2. Mads Ostberg
Qatar M-Sport WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC +0.3s
3. Thierry Neuville
Qatar WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC +0.6s
4. Mikko Hirvonen
Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT DS3 WRC +1.1s
5. Dani Sordo
Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT DS3 WRC +1.4s
6. Chris Atkinson
Citroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT DS3 WRC +2.4s
7. Nasser Al-Attiyah
Qatar WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC +4.1s
8. Evgeny Novikov
Qatar M-Sport WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC +5.3s
9. Jari-Matti Latvala
Volkswagen Motorsport Polo R WRC +6.4s
10. Benito Guerra
Citroen DS3 WRC +7.1sOthers
11. Michal Kosciuszko
Lotos Team WRC MINI John Cooper Works WRC +10.7s
12. Ken Block
Hoonigan Racing Division Ford Fiesta RS WRC +11.2s
13. Martin Prokop
Jipocar Czech National Team Ford Fiesta RS WRC +11.3s
14. Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari
Ford Fiesta RRC +16.1s
15. Nicolas Fuchs
Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX +21.7s
WRC2WRC2 standings after Stage 2 (Top 3):
1. Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari
Ford Fiesta RRC 3m 35.6s
2. Nicolas Fuchs
Mitsubishi Lancer Evo IX +5.6s
3. Yuriy Protasov
Subaru Impreza WRX STi +7.9s
None.all times unofficial