Sunday, 19 January 2014

Ogier wins in Monte Carlo - Monte Carlo Rally Review

Reigning world champion Sebastien Ogier fought back from a dismal opening day to win the season opening Monte Carlo Rally.

The Frenchman was down in ninth place at the end of the opening morning thanks to poor tyre choice and tricky weather conditions.

The M-Sport Fords of Robert Kubica and Bryan Bouffier set the early pace but after winning stages one and two, a crash for Kubica put the former F1 star out of the running.

Bouffier, making a one off appearance in a customer Fiesta was able to keep Ogier at bay at the start of the second day but a spin put paid to his hopes of victory. He went on to claim second.

Hyundai's first event on their WRC return ended before the conclusion of day one after Thierry Neuville went off the road on the first stage. In the other i20, despite running as high as third early on, Dani Sordo retired with an electrical problem.

Kris Meeke, in his first event since joining Citroen full time came home third, ahead of team mate Mads Ostberg.

Despite a disatrous start and a late puncture, Ogier's team mate Jari-Matti Latvala rounded out the top five, Andreas Mikkelsen finished seventh in the third VW Polo.

Welshman Elfyn Evans, who was competing in a WRC car for only the second time, finished a strong sixth. He beat M-Sport returnee Mikko Hirvonen who was closing in on him in the closing stages until a technical issue forced him to retire on the final day.

The penultimate stage had to be abondoned when eventual eighth placed finisher Jaroslav Melicharek blocked the road after getting stuck in snow.

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