Pontus Tidemand won every special stage as he dominated WRC 2 at YPF Rally Argentina on Friday.
The Swede opened his account with fastest time at Thursday night’s curtain-raising speed test in Cordoba. He then won all eight gravel road stages today to build a huge lead of 4min 30.7sec in his Skoda Fabia R5.
It is Tidemand’s first appearance at the south American classic and his week began with a testing accident which required a major car rebuild. But once the action began for real, he was in a class of his own on the rocky tracks.
“I’ve enjoyed the roads and the car is working well,” he said. “It’s not easy to be here in this position but I’m focused on my driving and just doing my thing. A long way to go and I need to concentrate, keep the focus and make the most of the experience.”
Chile’s Pedro Heller was second in a Ford Fiesta R5, in only his second WRC 2 outing. He lost 20sec this morning when the car suddenly stopped, but after resetting all the switches in the cockpit he was able to continue.
Argentine Juan Carlos Alonso is 51.6sec back in third in another Fabia R5, and the last of the six starters to make it through a gruelling day.
Benito Guerra held second before stopping in SS4, the same test which claimed Hubert Ptaszek. Their demise promoted Gustavo Saba into second but the Paraguayan was another to fall victim to the tough conditions and he retired two stages later.
Head to WRC+ to see the latest onboard and video reports from YPF Rally Argentina.