WRC Argentina: Meeke retakes third from Ogier, Neuville set for win

Toyota's Kris Meeke regained third place from World Rally Championship rival Sebastien Ogier on Sunday morning, recovering time lost from an overnight penalty, while Thierry Neuville is set for victory

WRC Argentina: Meeke retakes third from Ogier, Neuville set for win

Meeke regained a podium spot he had lost overnight from a 10 second penalty, passing Dani Sordo for fourth place after El Condor and then moving into third place and 5.2s ahead of Ogier after Mina Clavero.

His 10s penalty arose over a shortcut used on Saturday morning by the Northern Irishman, his team-mate Ott Tanak and WRC2 Pro leader Mads Ostberg on SS11, where the trio had deviated from the roadbook and gone around a gate instead of through it.

Hyundai duo Neuville and Andreas Mikkelsen are likely out of reach at the front, with Neuville taking an unexpected stage win on Mina Clavero after going only seventh fastest on El Condor beforehand.

The current championship leader has 40.2s in hand over Mikkelsen, who in turn has a 24.1s advantage over the charging Meeke.

However, Meeke complained at the end of the Mina Clavero that his steering was occasionally locking. There is no service between SS17 and the powerstage.

Sordo fell even further back as he struggled for grip on both stages, dropping behind Jari-Matti Latvala into sixth place. With one stage remaining, Latvala is only 0.7s ahead of the third Hyundai in fifth.

M-Sport's Teemu Suninen is a lonely seventh, over three minutes behind Sordo.

Ostberg is now under pressure from Tanak, who fell out of the lead battle on Saturday due to an electrical issue with his Toyota Yaris WRC that forced him to retire.

Two minutes had separated the pair heading into Sunday's trio of stages but Tanak has now closed the gap to 35.8s.

Tanak took 38.2s out of Ostberg on the first pass of El Condor, which also acts as the powerstage finale, though the Citroen driver had complained of a broken intercom affecting his pace.

WRC2 leader Pedro Heller completes the top 10 in an M-Sport-prepared Ford Fiesta R5.

Leading positions after SS17

Pos Driver Team Car Gap
1 Thierry Neuville, N.Gilsoul Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT Hyundai 3h07m47.8s
2 Andreas Mikkelsen, A.Jager Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT Hyundai 40.2s
3 Kris Meeke, S.Marshall Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota 1m04.3s
4 Sebastien Ogier, J.Ingrassia Citroen Total WRT Citroen 1m09.5s
5 Jari-Matti Latvala, M.Anttila Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota 1m25.7s
6 Dani Sordo, C.del Barrio Hyundai Shell Mobis WRT Hyundai 1m26.4s
7 Teemu Suninen, M.Salminen M-Sport Ford WRT Ford 4m44.5s
8 Mads Ostberg, T.Eriksen Citroen Total Citroen 13m47.7s
9 Ott Tanak, M.Jarveoja Toyota Gazoo Racing WRT Toyota 14m23.5s
10 Pedro Heller, M.Marti Pedro Heller Ford 18m23.1s


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Meeke route penalty demotes Toyota ace off the Argentina WRC podium
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WRC Rally Argentina: Thierry Neuville wins in Hyundai one-two

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