Stage data: SS10, La Mussara 2 (20.48 kilometres - asphalt)
By Prodrive WRC Team co-driver Carlos del Barrio: “It’s another very well known stage where Sebastien Ogier had engine failure last year when it was included on the last day. It’s very demanding for the tyres and very nice for the fast downhill section. It will be good to start on Tarmac.”
How the action unfolded:
Mads Ostberg has a new rival in his bid to finish third in the final FIA World Rally Championship standings after Mikko Hirvonen edged closer to the Norwegian on the second run through La Mussara.
Hirvonen, in a Citroen DS3 WRC, was 2.5s faster than Ostberg and is now 5.5s behind in the overall standings with two stages of day two remaining.
Ostberg, who said he wasn’t quite happy with the set-up of his privateer Ford Fiesta RS WRC, needs as many points as possible in his battle with Jari-Matti Latvala for third place in the final table. He plans to respond to Hirvonen’s threat by stiffening up his car for the next run.
Out front, Sebastien Loeb has grown his overall lead on RallyRACC-Rally de Espana to 21.0s after he outpaced his rival Latvala by 2.1s. “The conditions were much better than in the morning,” said Loeb. “We have all hard tyres and I tried really hard again. The feeling was really good with the car.”
Latvala added: “When there are patches of damp and dry it is not the strongest area for me but Loeb is really good. Maybe the car is too soft but there was nothing I could do more.”
Ott Tanak impressed with the third fastest time, 1.3s down on Loeb and 5.7s behind stage winner Dani Sordo: “If I feel comfortable in the car and everything is working then I can do it,” said Tanak.