France’s Ogier takes lead in Mexico Rally
Mexico City: France’s Sébastien Ogier took advantage of a crash by Finnish rival Esapekka Lappi to take the overall lead by 35.8 seconds after stages of the Mexico Rally on Saturday.
Eight-time world champion Ogier is a six-time Rally Mexico winner and with a win on Sunday he would eclipse the event title record he shares with compatriot Sébastien Loeb.
Hyundai driver Lappi had reclaimed the lead by Friday, but crashed just under 10km into the opening Ibarilla stage, his car hitting a utility pole before briefly catching fire.
After stage 19 of the 23 overall stages, Toyota racer Ogier set a pace of two hours, 35 minutes and 37.6 seconds, with Welshman Elfyn Evans Toyota in second and Thierry Neuville of Belgium in third, a drift of 40.1 seconds. Was in a Hyundai.
“I think this lead is good and I am happy with my day,” said Ogier. “It’s been another strong day for me.
“We had a slightly different approach this morning after Espapeca went away on the first stage. We didn’t need to take too many risks, but still managed to set some good times and increase our lead.
“Tomorrow is still long which means we cannot relax.”
On Saturday Ogier improved his margin over Evans to 11 seconds.