Sebastien Chardonnet held onto the lead, now up to 2m45.6s over Keith Cronin, with Mohammed Al Mutawaa completing the provisional podium even though he is almost 20 minutes further back.
Held on roads leading from Trier to Baumholder, the third day’s racing featured six timed stages, including the legendary “Arena Panzerplatte”, a 41-kilometre test on the slippery and treacherous tarmac roads at the military base. To spice up the action, heavy rain began to fall during the midday service, making conditions even more difficult.
The WRC 3 field featured five crews at the start of Saturday’s first stage – all in Citroen DS3 R3 cars.
After rejoining under Rally2 rules, Quentin Gilbert was caught out within the first few kilometres and forced to retire, whilst Keith Cronin took the day’s first stage win. The Irishman held onto his second place despite running into trouble on stage 13, losing over a minute in the process.
Leaders since the start of the event, Chardonnet and his co-driver Thibault de la Haye produced another trouble-free performance in the morning. They maintained their pace in the afternoon loop and made it back to the service park without returning to the military base, as the second run on Arena Panzerplatte was cancelled.
After rejoining under Rally2 rules, Christian Riedemann rebuilt his confidence and stayed in touch with the leaders. He ended the day in fourth position.