WRC Rally Mexico: Jari-Matti Latvala takes ample lead into Sunday

Jari-Matti Latvala will carry a 1m35.7s advantage over Volkswagen team-mate Sebastien Ogier into Sunday's Rally Mexico finale after a calm run through the trio of spectator stages that closed Saturday

WRC Rally Mexico: Jari-Matti Latvala takes ample lead into Sunday

Latvala has taken maximum benefit from his World Rally champion stablemate having to run first on the road through the opening days.

Starting further back by virtue of failing to score a single point in Monte Carlo or Sweden, Latvala has won every single full-length stage in the rally so far.

Ogier nibbled a little back by being quickest on both Saturday's second run of the superspecial at the Leon circuit and the evening's street stage in the city.

But Latvala has plenty in hand even though Sunday - when the reverse-rally-order starting line-up means his road position advantage is gone - begins with a monster 49.7-mile stage, before concluding with a 10-mile powerstage.

Only attrition, of which there has been plenty this week, is likely to change the leading results on Sunday given the large gaps that have developed between the frontrunners.

Dani Sordo, pacesetter on Saturday's first superspecial blast, is cruising towards the new Hyundai's third podium in as many rallies with all pressure on his third place gone when Andreas Mikkelsen crashed the third VW on Saturday afternoon.

Mads Ostberg has nearly a minute's margin over Hayden Paddon as the pair complete the top five.

Mikkelsen is expected to restart under Rally2 on Sunday, when he will still have a chance of getting back into an overall top 10 currently completed by privateer Valery Gorban in one of the ageing Mini World Rally Cars.

Over three years after the Prodrive-run works programme was abandoned, the Mini has a shot at its first WRC points finish since Nathan Quinn took an example to eighth in Rally Australia in 2013.

M-Sport number two Eric Camilli will definitely restart under Rally2 on Sunday having crashed on Saturday while running 11th following a Friday puncture.

But there will be no third chance for Thierry Neuville, whose Hyundai was heavily damaged in his second accident of the weekend on Saturday morning.

Both Neuville and co-driver Nicolas Gilsoul were declared OK after precautionary checks in hospital following the incident on the Otates stage.

Autosport Race Centre Live's Rally Mexico coverage will resume at 1.45pm UK time on Sunday for the deciding stages

LEADING POSITIONS AFTER SS19:

-

shares
comments
WRC Rally Mexico: Jari-Matti Latvala marches on, attrition behind

Previous article

WRC Rally Mexico: Jari-Matti Latvala marches on, attrition behind

Next article

WRC Rally Mexico: Ogier flies but Latvala on brink of win

WRC Rally Mexico: Ogier flies but Latvala on brink of win
Load comments
Does Neuville have a point with his Rally1 rant? Plus

Does Neuville have a point with his Rally1 rant?

OPINION: Thierry Neuville's diatribe against the upcoming Rally1-spec machines that will usher in the World Rally Championship's new hybrid era was remarkable in an era where drivers are usually reticent to air their views in public. But are the Belgian's concerns about speed, safety and cost entirely valid?

WRC
Sep 16, 2021
How the WRC's new flying Finn reached new heights in the Greek mountains Plus

How the WRC's new flying Finn reached new heights in the Greek mountains

After Kalle Rovanpera’s historic feat at Rally Estonia, the Finn scaled new heights at the Rally of the Gods with a commanding victory. And this time Toyota’s young star demonstrated why the future is bright with his devastating speed and consistency at the Acropolis Rally

WRC
Sep 13, 2021
The WRC drivers that came of age at the Acropolis Rally Plus

The WRC drivers that came of age at the Acropolis Rally

Five drivers have won first time out at the Rally Acropolis, transcending the tough dirt and gravel Greek roads to cement a place in rallying folklore. Here are three of the first-time winners' tales

WRC
Sep 9, 2021
Understanding Suninen’s sudden WRC exit gamble Plus

Understanding Suninen’s sudden WRC exit gamble

From being considered a likely contender to drive the next-generation M-Sport Ford Puma in 2022, Teemu Suninen's abrupt exit has created plenty of questions. The Finn's bid to become his country's next World Rally Championship winner won't be furthered by being sidelined, but there may be reason behind the decision

WRC
Sep 2, 2021
Could Spa’s cameo offer the WRC a new avenue to exploit? Plus

Could Spa’s cameo offer the WRC a new avenue to exploit?

OPINION: The Ypres Rally featured a cameo from the Spa-Francorchamps circuit in its final stage, giving WRC teams the chance to experience its iconic corners in rallying machinery. It proved to be an engaging addition to the rally, and could perhaps serve as an example for other events to visit famous circuits

WRC
Aug 24, 2021
How Hyundai's home hero delivered overdue WRC success in Belgium Plus

How Hyundai's home hero delivered overdue WRC success in Belgium

With limited recent fortune and pressure starting to mount, Hyundai needed a big result at the Ypres Rally. All the key components came together in Belgium to see home hero Thierry Neuville lead a manufacturer 1-2 and kickstart its World Rally Championship challenge

WRC
Aug 16, 2021
The new car that can resurrect Ford's WRC winning pedigree Plus

The new car that can resurrect Ford's WRC winning pedigree

M-Sport has become the first to unveil its new-for-2022 hybrid World Rally Championship challenger, the Puma Rally1. Ford has upped its support in a bid for glory, but can the new machine roll back the years and return the Blue Oval to the top of the WRC tree?

WRC
Aug 12, 2021
The rookie WRC driver aiming to continue Loeb and Ogier's legacies Plus

The rookie WRC driver aiming to continue Loeb and Ogier's legacies

French drivers have dominated the World Rally Championship across the past two decades; Sebastiens Loeb and Ogier have racked up the titles in commanding fashion. With Ogier calling it a day on full-time WRC competition from next year, France will pin its long-term hopes on rookie Adrien Fourmaux, who looks to have a bright future.

WRC
Aug 7, 2021