The Pole won last night’s opening two tests before winning the first seven of today’s eight stages in his Citroen DS3 RRC. Only a final stage fastest time by Indonesia’s Subhan Aksa deprived Kubica of a clean sweep.
He was 38.2sec clear of Ukraine’s Yuriy Protasov last night and stretched that advantage by a minute during this morning’s four stages. He pulled further clear this afternoon in what is only his second gravel WRC outing.
“It’s been a good day for us, but very tough with two loops of difficult stages,” said Kubica. “Okay, the last one was not so bad but the other three were very rough – especially on the second pass.”
Protasov and series leader Abdulaziz Al-Kuwari enjoyed a thrilling battle for second. Protasov held the initiative in his Ford Fiesta RRC before the Qatari moved ahead on SS8 in a similar car, despite a broken anti-roll bar and overheating brakes.
However, the Ukraine driver regained second on the next test and ended the day 4.4sec ahead. “The route was very difficult with a lot of stones. I drove slowly because safety is better. I am gaining experience and I had no punctures today,” said Protasov.
“The stages were so rough that sometimes we couldn’t hold the steering wheel,” said Al-Kuwari. “It was really tough but we finished. Can I catch Protasov? I hope we can.”
Aksa lies fourth in another Fiesta RRC, with Oleksii Tamrazov completing the top five in a Fiesta S2000, the Ukraine pilot capitalising on a string of retirements ahead.
The Mini John Cooper Works cars of team-mates Valeriy Gorban and Oleksii Kikireshko were both sidelined in SS7 with broken front suspension, while Lorenzo Bertelli stopped with a broken cross-member after SS4.
Click here to view the full WRC 2 results after leg 2.