Ogier s'impose and Croatia

Monte-Carlo: Ogier comes back strong

Already impressive in the morning on this same special between La Bréole and Quellenet, Sébastien Ogier was once again the fastest during SS8. A new scratch time which allows the French driver to come back to within five seconds of Elfyn Evans, leader since the start of this Monte-Carlo rally.

The fight between the two Toyota Yaris of Sébastien Ogier and Elfyn Evans promises to be fascinating until the end. In the lead since the start of this Monte-Carlo rally which traditionally opens the WRC World Championship each season in January, the Welshman is still in control before switching to the third day, Saturday. However, the Frenchman came back on the heels of the leader. For the return of the drivers on the special stage between La Bréole and Sélonnet, late Friday afternoon, the nine-time WRC world champion, who would become the first man to win the event ten times (nine times for the World Championship WRC) in case of new success this weekend was once again the fastest.

Ogier beat Neuville by just under three seconds and Evans by just over four seconds. A new scratch time which allows the Gapençais to get even closer to last season’s vice-world champion. At the evening of the second day, Ogier is only 4”5 behind the leader in the provisional classification, although still in the lead nonetheless.

Ogier: “Tomorrow (Saturday) should be nice”

The co-record holder for victories on the Rock certainly made less of an impression than for his first pass, during SS5, which saw him crush the special. Evans, second, finished more than eleven seconds behind the Frenchman. Ogier, returning on the heels of Evans, was however very satisfied with it on Friday evening. “I’m happy to have managed to get close tonight (Friday). Tomorrow (Saturday) should be nice,” appreciated the man who assures that his priority today is not to add new world champion titles to his impressive list of achievements.

The person concerned nevertheless admits that it was “complicated”, particularly at the beginning, due to the mud but also his position on the road. Having gained momentum during this 2nd day, Ogier can nevertheless and legitimately hope to dislodge Evans from first place on Saturday. Evans is aware of this: “This rally is never easy”.

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