Solberg on a charge

Sebastien Loeb has seen his lead of this weekend's Wales Rally GB drop to just 12s as drivers prepare for the final test of the day, the second run through the 32.58km Rheola stage. Peugeot's Marcus Gronholm has been Loeb's nearest challenger, but a storming effort from Subaru's Petter Solberg on the penultimate stage of the first leg propelled him ahead of the Finn into second place

Solberg on a charge

Gronholm went into the service park following the four morning stages determined to find more speed in the WRC 307. The Finn made differential adjustments, but after SS6 he realised any improvement in speed had failed to materialise. Instead he had to watch as Solberg blasted through to top the stage 5.7s ahead of Ford's Markko Martin.

Martin has been struggling with grip on the soggy stages but his second-quickest time in the penultimate stage was his best effort of the day. But a 31.6s deficit to Loeb won't be easily overcome.

The stage has been set for a three-way battle for victory, Loeb can rest relatively easy sitting as he does on a 30-point cushion over his Solberg. The onus is on the Norwegian and Gronholm to rein in the Frenchman to keep their championship hopes.

The final stage of the day kicks off at 17:34.

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