Top 15 WRC classification after SS1 at RallyRACC Catalunya

Sebastien Ogier heads up World Rally Championship title rival Thierry Neuville on the opening stage of RallyRACC Catalunya in a dramatic start to the penultimate round.

Neuville endured a disaster start to his event by rolling during his second run on the Shakedown, forcing his mechanics into a frantic repair job ahead of SS1 on Thursday evening.

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The WRC championship leader made the start but missed out to M-Sport Ford’s Ogier by 3.7s on the 3.7km opening stage in Barcelona. The defending WRC champion trails Neuville by seven points in the standings ahead of the dramatic final two rounds starting in Spain before the finale in Australia.

Fellow WRC title-contender Ott Tanak completes the top three for Toyota, 4.2s off Ogier, with Hyundai’s Andreas Mikkelsen slotting into fourth place at the end of the opener.

Elfyn Evans has responded to a difficult home event at Wales Rally GB with a solid start in Spain with fifth place for M-Sport Ford, while Volkswagen’s WRC2 debut had an eye-catching start with Eric Camilli putting his Polo GTI R5 sixth at the end of SS1.

Local favourite Dani Sordo returns to WRC action for Hyundai and ended the opening stage seventh fastest ahead of second-place WRC2 challenger Kalle Rovanpera for Skoda as Craig Breen (Citroen) and Jan Kopecky (Skoda) completed the top ten.