Stats watch: Tänak the top sprinter

With four rounds complete, Ott Tänak is riding high as the fastest driver so far this season – even though he trails Sébastien Ogier by 39 points in the championship standings.

Despite not winning a rally so far in 2018, Tänak has collected more fastest stage times than anyone else and tops our wrc.com sprinter standings ahead of this week’s fifth round, YPF Rally Argentina (26-29 April). 

Who else is doing well? We’ve crunched the data to bring you the stage-by-stage lowdown in WRC and WRC 2. 

WRC fastest times:

Four rounds done and Tänak, in his first season with Toyota Gazoo Racing World Rally Team, has set the fastest time on 18 stages – six more than championship leader Ogier. 

An outright win still eludes him this year, with second in Corsica his best result so far, but with nine rounds to come – including Sardinia and Germany where he won last year – there is still time to mount a serious title challenge. 

Ogier holds second in our table, thanks to him having the luxury of choosing whether to sacrifice stage wins to instead focus on the bigger prize.

PositionDriverFastest stages
1Tänak18
2Ogier12
3Neuville11
=4Loeb/Lappi/Meeke6
=7Breen/Sordo/Mikkelsen3
=10Evans/Paddon2
PositionDriverStages in the lead
1Ogier38
2Neuville18
3Sordo8
4Loeb3
5Tänak2
6Meeke1

WRC stages in the lead in 2018

Of the 70 stages contested so far this year, Ogier has held the rally lead for more than half of them – a sign of how dominant the Frenchman has been and how skilled he is at managing a rally.

Hyundai’s Rally Sweden winner Thierry Neuville is in second place with team-mate Dani Sordo a surprise third after leading eight stages.

PositionDriverFastest stages
1Tidemand22
2Kopecký12
3Katsuta10
=4Suninen/Veiby6
6Rovanperä5

WRC 2 fastest times in 2018

Unsurprising considering how close the battle is at the top of the drivers’ championship, the top two fastest drivers are the Skoda Motorsport pairing of Pontus Tidemand and Jan Kopecký. After his win in Sweden, Takamoto Katsuta isn’t too far behind, the only other driver in double figures.

PositionDriverStages in the lead
1Kopecký26
2Tidemand24
3 Katsuta17
4Camilli3

WRC 2 stages in the lead in 2018

As with the stage wins, it’s a Skoda lock-out at the top of the table with Katsuta still in touching distance with 17 stages led. However, this time it’s Kopecký on top thanks to the Czech driver’s two rally wins to Tidemand’s one.

The only other driver to hold the lead was Eric Camilli in his only WRC 2 event of the year at Rallye Monte-Carlo as he finished the first day on top before crashing on stage six.

Head to WRC+ to watch All Live from YPF Rally Argentina, including every stage broadcast live, breaking service park news and expert studio analysis.

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