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Sebastien Ogier has extended his World Rally Championship lead to 17 points over Thierry Neuville with his third win of the year thanks to a dominant display at Tour de Corse for M-Sport Ford.

Ogier darted into an early lead on the opening loop of Friday’s action and rarely looked troubled as he gradually built his advantage to just over half a minute at the midway stage with WRC title rival Neuville his nearest challenger.

Neuville, who had been fending off Citroen’s Kris Meeke during Saturday’s action until a crash on SS8 ended the British driver’s charge, was left frustrated by a difficult set-up with his Hyundai i20 stalling his progress trying to chase down Ogier.

During the closing stages Neuville was leapfrogged by Ott Tanak in the standings to see the Toyota driver take second place for Toyota. Tour de Corse produced further frustration for Neuville and Hyundai when he suffered an engine issue on the Power Stage to lose his shot at the bonus points as he limped home in third place.

Hyundai teammate Dani Sordo enjoyed a late jump up to fourth place after Esapekka Lappi suffered a small off on the penultimate stage to drop from P4 to P7 but the young Finn produced a late fightback for Toyota to claim the Power Stage victory and with it move up to sixth place at the finish.

Elfyn Evans enjoyed a low-key performance to take fifth place for M-Sport Ford ahead of Lappi with Andreas Mikkelsen a lowly seventh place having been off the pace of the front-runners for Hyundai.

WRC2 star Jan Kopecky claimed another class victory for Skoda Motorsport while finishing eighth in the overall standings ahead of Meeke (who restarted under Rally 2 rules) as Yoann Bonato rounded out the top ten point finishers.

Nine-time WRC champion Sebastien Loeb battled back to finish 14th for Citroen after crashing out on SS2, while Jari-Matti Latavala was the only other premier class driver to fail to finish in Corsica after crashing during SS8.