Sebastien Ogier – leader of the first day of the Rally MexicoMarch 9, 2019
Six-time and current world champion Sebastien Ogier confidently began the first gravel stage in the 2019 season, becoming the fastest following the results of the first day of the Rally Mexico.
Despite the unfavorable third position in the starting list, the driver of the Citroen won four of the eight special stages on Friday. Moreover, the Frenchman wasn’t even stopped by a puncture on the SU7, at the finish of which he was ahead by Elfin Evans from the M-Sport Ford team by 4.2 seconds.
In the general classification, Evans is the closest pursuer of Ogier, 14.8 seconds behind his former partner.
“Almost a perfect day for us, not counting the puncture of the wheel. Also in the course of the morning section, because of the not very convenient starting position, there was not enough traction with the track, ”the four-time winner of Rally Mexico shared his impressions. “On Saturday, we will be in a better position, but it is important to stay out of trouble.”
The third place in the end of Friday was occupied by Irishman Chris Mick, who turned out to be the best representative of Toyota. Ott Tyanak, being the leader of the championship, was forced to open the track throughout the day and became the fourth c of 37 seconds behind Ogier, while Jari-Matti Latvala came down because of a generator failure.
But even more disappointing was the day for the Hyundai team. Thierry Neuville lost more than 40 seconds due to a puncture during the passage of the 31.5-kilometer El Chocolate dopa in the morning and by the end of the day was exactly six minutes behind Ogier, becoming the sixth. Belgian partner Andreas Mikkelsen came down due to technical problems on the SS5, taking the leading position at that time. Due to technical problems, Dani Sordo also dropped out, replacing Sebastien Loeb behind the wheel of the third Hyundai i20.
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