WRC Corsica: Volkswagen's Ogier leads Meeke after first morning

Volkswagen's Sebastien Ogier quickly established a comfortable lead on the first morning of the French round of the World Rally Championship in Corsica

WRC Corsica: Volkswagen's Ogier leads Meeke after first morning

A tight battle looked possible after the 30-mile Acqua Doria - Albitreccia stage that opened the rally, as Kris Meeke and Dani Sordo stayed within 4.8 seconds of Ogier's pace.

Thierry Neuville had also matched the world champion for much of the stage before fading brakes led to a poor final sector.

But Ogier suggested at the end of SS1 that his pace notes had been too conservative and he raised his game on the next stage, Plage du Liamone - Sarrola-Carcopino.

A time 8s quicker than second-quickest man Neuville on that one left Ogier 14.7s clear of Meeke overall heading for the midday regroup.

The fight for second remains alive - 4.2s covering Meeke, Neuville and Sordo, with the Hyundais having swapped places on SS2 as Sordo ended the stage baffled that what felt like a competitive drive in a better-handling car produced a disappointing time.

Ogier's VW team-mates Andreas Mikkelsen and Jari-Matti Latvala started badly.

Mikkelsen's SS1 splits were respectable until his left foot "went to sleep" amid a vibration in the car.

The situation was slightly better on SS2, where he was third quickest and moved back up from eighth to sixth overall behind Hayden Paddon.

Latvala concluded the set-up he chose in pre-rally testing wasn't working, and admitted to lacking rhythm and confidence as he finished the morning in seventh ahead of Craig Breen.

The M-Sport Fords have again lacked pace - Mads Ostberg and Eric Camilli closely matched but a long way off their rivals in ninth and 10th - while Ott Tanak quickly resigned himself to a tough weekend with DMACK's asphalt tyre. The Estonian is behind the R5-spec cars of Elfyn Evans and Jan Kopecky in 13th.

Follow WRC Rally Corsica from 1:20pm UK time on Friday, and all weekend, with Autosport Race Centre Live.

LEADING POSITIONS AFTER SS2:

-


shares
comments
Citroen enters Kris Meeke and Craig Breen for Rally GB

Previous article

Citroen enters Kris Meeke and Craig Breen for Rally GB

Next article

WRC Corsica: VW's Ogier builds lead as Meeke hits trouble

WRC Corsica: VW's Ogier builds lead as Meeke hits trouble
Load comments
How Finland’s newest rally hero made WRC history in Estonia Plus

How Finland’s newest rally hero made WRC history in Estonia

Kalle Rovanpera broke a decade-old record in becoming the World Rally Championship's youngest-ever winner in a truly dominant performance on Estonia's fast gravel roads. Staving off the challenge of Hyundai's Craig Breen, his committed drive showed a maturity beyond his 20 years that gives Toyota's post-Ogier era a far brighter complexion

WRC
Jul 19, 2021
How WRC's new Safari adventure ended with a familiar tale Plus

How WRC's new Safari adventure ended with a familiar tale

The World Rally Championship’s delayed return to the Safari Rally was always set throw up some surprises, but aside from a spirited showing by Thierry Neuville it became another painful event for Hyundai in 2021. Once again it was Sebastien Ogier who took full advantage as he completed a stunning comeback drive

WRC
Jun 28, 2021
Remembering Colin McRae’s final WRC win Plus

Remembering Colin McRae’s final WRC win

The Safari Rally returns to the World Rally Championship this weekend for the first time since 2002 - when crowd favourite Colin McRae set aside the maximum attack style for which he was renowned to deliver a textbook third win

WRC
Jun 23, 2021
How Hyundai's broken record gave Toyota a special Sardinia 1-2 Plus

How Hyundai's broken record gave Toyota a special Sardinia 1-2

For the second WRC gravel rally in a row, a promising Friday for Hyundai turned into desolation as Toyota gratefully picked up the pieces. This time it was championship leader Sebastien Ogier who took full advantage after Ott Tanak and Dani Sordo retired to score a memorable victory, having swept the road on the first two days

WRC
Jun 7, 2021
How Hyundai's latest self-destruction handed Evans Portugal victory Plus

How Hyundai's latest self-destruction handed Evans Portugal victory

At one point Hyundai held the top three positions in Portugal, but when trouble struck the Korean marque's two leading chargers, a grateful Elfyn Evans was on hand to see off Hyundai third man Dani Sordo and become the third different winner in four rallies

WRC
May 24, 2021
Why the success of AVB's WRC debut won't be defined on the stages Plus

Why the success of AVB's WRC debut won't be defined on the stages

Three years after a Dakar Rally crash resulted in him being airlifted to hospital, Andre Villas-Boas is preparing to make his debut on his home round of the World Rally Championship later this month. His goals for the event are modest, but the same cannot be said for the charities he plans to promote where his true impact could be felt

WRC
May 13, 2021
Why there's no easy fix for Hyundai's operational Achilles Heel Plus

Why there's no easy fix for Hyundai's operational Achilles Heel

Hyundai Motorsport boss Andrea Adamo was vocal in his criticism of his team's tyre choices on Rally Croatia and declared that he "had better move my ass and solve it". Doing so will be vital to getting Hyundai's 2021 WRC title hopes back on track, but finding the root of the problem won't be the work of a moment

WRC
Apr 28, 2021
How Ogier held on after a shock bump in the road to triumph in Croatia Plus

How Ogier held on after a shock bump in the road to triumph in Croatia

Sebastien Ogier was already in an incredibly tight fight at Rally Croatia before a surprise collision with public road traffic at the start of the final day. But the defending champion held his nerve to take a narrow victory and create further World Rally Championship history

WRC
Apr 26, 2021