Loeb started day two 1.1s ahead of Citroen team-mate Mikko Hirvonen and was quickest at the first timing split. However, there are reports that the nine-time world champion has gone off the road and is currently stuck. Several drivers have confirmed the stage surface is extremely slippery.
At the completion of Thursday’s brace of stages, Loeb said: “We have both got off to a flying start. We’re free to race as we see fit. For the moment, I feel good, so I’m pushing really hard.”
Citroen team boss Yves Matton said last night: “After the Rallye de France where there was quite a lot of pressure, obviously we’re more relaxed this weekend. Both our crews would dearly love to win here and they showed that they were the quickest today. Both drivers are free to run the race as they see fit, bearing in mind that our goal is still to achieve a one-two finish at this rally.”
Thierry Neuville, in a Qatar World Rally Team Citroen, also briefly stopped at the 25-kilometre mark but is now moving again. More to follow...