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Loeb edges further ahead

Sebastien Loeb remains in control in Sardinia following Saturday's opening loop of three stages and now lies 35.4 seconds up on Mikko Hirvonen.

Sebastien Loeb continues to lead Rally Italia Sardegna following the opening loop this morning.

Loeb finished Friday's opening leg 33.2 seconds up his closest rival and despite running first on the road this morning and having to sweep away the loose gravel, he actually managed to extend his lead slightly. Indeed while he was 'only' sixth in SS9 and SS11 and fifth in SS10, he still returned to service with a very healthy cushion, now 35.4 seconds up on Mikko Hirvonen's Ford Fiesta.

Hirvonen, who lost time in SS7 on Friday when he picked up a right rear puncture and dropped him to fourth, was on a charge this morning, setting the third best times in SS9 and SS10 and the second best in SS11. As a result he moved back up to second and ahead of Petter Solberg, who had a puncture of his own in SS10.

Sebastien Ogier is next up, just 1.5 seconds off Solberg and 3.5 seconds off Hirvonen. He had hauled himself up to second, but a poor time in the final test this morning dropped him back down to fourth.

Mads Ostberg sits fifth, almost 40 seconds off P4, while Dani Sordo continues to go well on his debut in the new Mini WRC car and lies one place further back. SWRC leader Ott Tanak, Matthew Wilson, Juho Hanninen and Martin Prokop complete the top ten.

A number of runners re-started this morning under the SupeRally, including Jari-Matti Latvala, who was quickest in all three tests, taking full advantage of his better road position. He remains well down the order though, having gone out in SS1 yesterday when his co-driver, Miikka Anttila, made a mistake with the pacenotes. Britain's Kris Meeke also re-joined in his works Mini WRC car, but stopped again in SS10. Henning Solberg was not able to re-start and neither was Peter van Merksteijn Sr.

The action now continues this afternoon with a repeat-run through this morning's three tests. SS12, the 29.35 kilometre-run through Coiluna, starts at 14.39 hours local time.


Rally d'Italia Sardegna: Overall standings after Stage 11 (Top 10):

1. Sebastien Loeb Citroen Total WRT DS3 WRC 2hrs 13mins 14.3secs M
2. Mikko Hirvonen Ford Abu Dhabi WRT Fiesta RS WRC +00mins 35.4secs M
3. Petter Solberg PSWRT Citroen DS3 WRC +00mins 37.1secs M
4. Sebastien Ogier Citroen Total WRT DS3 WRC +00mins 38.6secs M
5. Mads Ostberg M-Sport Stobart Ford Fiesta RS WRC +01mins 16.9secs M
6. Dani Sordo Mini WRC Team John Cooper Works +01mins 50.1secs M
7. Ott Tanak Ford Fiesta S2000 +03mins 42.3secs S
8. Matthew Wilson M-Sport Stobart Ford Fiesta RS WRC +04mins 30.7secs A0
9. Juho Hanninen Red Bull Skoda Fabia S2000 +04mins 35.6secs S
10. Martin Prokop Czech Ford National Fiesta S2000 +05mins 14.2secs S

Others:

11. Armindo Araujo Motorsport Italia Mini John Cooper Works +07mins 36.8secs A0
12. Khalid Al-Qassimi Team Abu Dhabi Fiesta RS WRC +07mins 49.7secs M
13. Dennis Kuipers FERM Powertools Ford Fiesta RS WRC +08mins 06.4secs M
15. Peter van Merksteijn Jr Van Merksteijn Citroen DS3 WRC +09mins 43.9secs M
17. Evgeny Novikov M-Sport Stobart Ford Fiesta RS WRC +11mins 58.6secs A0
20. PG Andersson M-Sport Stobart Ford Fiesta RS WRC +18mins 09.9secs A0
24. Federico Villagra Munchis Ford WRT Fiesta RS WRC +23mins 41.3secs M
32. Jari-Matti Latvala Ford Abu Dhabi WRT Fiesta RS WRC +34mins 25.6secs M


SWRC standings after Stage 11 (Top 3):

1. Ott Tanak Ford Fiesta S2000 2hrs 16mins 56.6secs S
2. Juho Hanninen Red Bull Skoda Fabia S2000 +00mins 53.3secs S
3. Martin Prokop Czech Ford National Fiesta S2000 +01mins 31.9secs S


WRC Academy standings after Stage 11 (Top 3)#:

1. Egon Kaur Ford Fiesta R2 2hours 36mins 57.9secs A
2. Miguel Baldoni Ford Fiesta R2 +00mins 45.3secs A
3. Fredrik Ahlin Ford Fiesta R2 +01mins 40.0secs A

# WRC Academy does not include Day 3 of the event.


Notable retirements:

SS2. Jari-Matti Latvala Ford Abu Dhabi WRT Fiesta RS WRC Suspension M*
SS2. Daniel Oliveira Brazil WRT Mini John Cooper Works Stopped in stage A0*
SS3. Kris Meeke Mini WRC Team John Cooper Works Lost wheel M*
SS5. Federico Villagra Munchis Ford WRT Fiesta RS WRC Stopped in stage M*
SS7. Evgeny Novikov M-Sport Stobart Ford Fiesta RS WRC Off the road A0*
SS7. Henning Solberg M-Sport Stobart Ford Fiesta RS WRC Withdrawn. M
SS8. Peter van Merksteijn Sr Van Merksteijn Citroen DS3 WRC Withdrawn M

SS9. Daniel Oliveira Brazil WRT Mini John Cooper Works Stopped in stage A0
SS10. Kris Meeke Mini WRC Team John Cooper Works Stopped in stage M

* denotes re-started under SupeRally.

all times unofficial



Related Pictures

Click on relevant pic to enlarge
Sebastien Loeb (FRA) Daniel Elena (MON), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total World Rally Team
Sebastien Loeb (FRA) Daniel Elena (MON), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total World Rally Team
Sebastien Loeb (FRA) Daniel Elena (MON), Citroën DS3 WRC, Citroën Total World Rally Team

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