Ford on top in Wales
Jari-Matti Latvala leads Wales Rally GB.
Jari-Matti Latvala and the entire Ford camp for that matter put in a dominating Friday to lead from Citroen rivals Sébastien Loeb and Mikko Hirvonen.
Petter Solberg set best time on the opening two stages this morning, but from Myherin on it was the JML show. Latvala took his first scratch time on what he referred to as his favourite stage and never looked back. Three more best times and a 12.1s lead over team-mate Solberg is a decent day’s work in the Welsh forests.
Sébastien Loeb is third overall at 21.3 seconds to Latvala. The Frenchman said after each stage how hard he was pushing. He was impressed with the speed of the Fords but then did say “I don’t have to win”, referring to his very comfortable championship lead. There could be some fun if Loeb decides to get in the mix Saturday morning.
Mads Ostberg may have put in the most impressive performance of the day. The privateer Fiesta was among the leaders on all the timed sectors. The Norwegian went to finish fourth overall at 11.3s to Loeb. Mikko Hirvonen was never on pace and is a distant fifth overall.
The Fords of Ott Tanak and Evgeny Novikov come next. Neither the Estonian nor the Russian put a wheel wrong. Thierry Neuville held on to conclude day on in eighth place after serving as road sweeper through the first six stages. Matthew Wilson is ninth on his return drive to the WRC, 19.8s ahead of the Czech Republic’s Martin Prokop.
Published 14/09/2012 15:16
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