Sect. 3, Orien: Varying Ford fortunes

Carlos Sainz set the pace on the third section of the Safari Rally, but while the Spaniard was able to close the gap slightly on overall leader Tommi Makinen, his Ford team will be bitterly disappointed following the retirement of team mate and championship leader Colin McRae (click here for separate story)

Sect. 3, Orien: Varying Ford fortunes

Sainz completed the 112.52km Orien test 17 seconds ahead of Makinen's Mitsubishi, but Makinen is secure in the knowledge that if he can score any points in Kenya, he'll move clear of McRae in the championship after the Scot retired with clutch failure while heading to service.

Didier Auriol ensured that three different manufacturers held the top three spots on Orien after finishing the section in his Peugeot 206 WRC just one second back from Makinen.

Francois Delecour in the second Ford was fourth quickest, but the mercurial Frenchman wasn't quite on the same pace as the front three, finishing the test 38 seconds off team mate Sainz's time.

Peugeot's Harri Rovanpera last scored a WRC victory in the snow and ice of Sweden so there couldn't be a bigger contrast between that victory and his drive in Africa. However the Finn is adapting to the conditions well, setting the fifth fastest time on the section and, following McRae's early departure, moves up to third overall, albeit 4m36s off compatriot Makinen's time.

Another Finn, reigning world champ Marcus Gronholm, rounds out the top six times on Orien. He's fourth overall on the leaderboard, just 20 seconds behind his team mate Rovanpera.

Subaru's Safari Rally is not going to plan. Following team leader Richard Burns' retirement on the first test, number two driver Petter Solberg lost time on the penultimate section of the day. The Norwegian damaged the right rear suspension on his Impreza and has dropped from fourth to eighth.

The last test of the day is the 71.83km Maili Tisa section.

For Sect. 3, Orien results click here.

For full live timings table click here.

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