WRC Rally Germany: Jari-Matti Latvala leads Sebastien Ogier by 0.1s

Jari-Matti Latvala leads Volkswagen team-mate Sebastien Ogier by just one tenth of a second after an ultra-close opening loop of Rally Germany

WRC Rally Germany: Jari-Matti Latvala leads Sebastien Ogier by 0.1s

Ogier, who has a mathematical chance to wrap up the 2015 World Rally Championship title this weekend, led the first two stages but was always under pressure from Rally Finland winner Latvala.

The Finn then edged into the rally lead by half a second when he outpaced Ogier on the first of the two vineyard stages.

Ogier struck back on the following Mittelmosel stage, but only beat Latvala by four tenths - meaning they head for service a mere 0.1s apart.

VW holds the top three places at the moment, but Andreas Mikkelsen has been unable to match his team-mates' pace and is 15.9s off the lead.

He is under pressure for third from the Citroen of Kris Meeke, who had a scare when he had an impact on a rear wheel on Moselland.

The damage did not spread to the suspension and Meeke was able to continue, running 5.5s behind Mikkelsen.

Meeke is the only man able to keep a VW in sight at present, with the Hyundais, M-Sport Fords and other Citroens falling away in a very tight group squabbling over the remaining points.

Last year's Germany winner Hyundai leads that pack for now, Dani Sordo running 2.9s ahead of Thierry Neuville in fifth.

Elfyn Evans had been in front of them both before having to reset his M-Sport Fiesta's handbrake system on Moselland. He is still in the mix in seventh, followed by Hayden Paddon.

Evans's team-mate Ott Tanak cost himself 19s when he slid through a field and clipped a barrier on the opening Sauertal stage. He has recovered from 14th to 10th and is right on Mads Ostberg's tail for ninth.

Reigning Junior champion and regular WRC2 frontrunner Stephane Lefebvre is making his World Rally Car debut this weekend in an additional Citroen. He ran as high as eighth, but has dropped back to 12th as his inexperience told on the vineyard stages.

Robert Kubica began the event with a five-minute penalty after having to change his RK Ford's engine last night.

He has been consistently in the top 10 on stage results but needs significant attrition to get near the scorers this weekend.

The WRC2 battle has already been shaken up after championship leader Esapekka Lappi crashed his Skoda out of an early third place.

Team-mate Jan Kopecky leads the class.

Follow the Rally Germany action with AUTOSPORT Live - afternoon coverage starts at 1.40pm UK time

LEADING POSITIONS AFTER SS4:

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Sebastien Ogier feels he owes VW a home WRC win on Rally Germany

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WRC Germany: Ogier builds lead over Volkswagen team-mate Latvala

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