Dani Sordo leads, Sebastien Loeb third in Mexico
Rally Mexico

Dani Sordo leads, Sebastien Loeb third in Mexico

Hyundai's Dani Sordo stormed into the Rally Mexico lead on Friday morning, while Sebastien Loeb established himself in third place on his World Rally Championship return.

Having retired from Monte Carlo and not been entered for Sweden, Sordo's zero-point championship position meant he was a very favourable 10th of the 11 World Rally Cars on the road for Mexico's first gravel stages.

Last year's Mexico winner Kris Meeke - seventh on the road - hit the front for Citroen initially on the Duarte-Derramadero stage, but back-to-back stage wins on the following El Chocolate and Ortega stages thrust Sordo to the front while Meeke felt his choice of two hard front tyres might have proved incorrect.

Meeke dropped to third behind Elfyn Evans - who was eighth in the start order - on El Chocolate, but a high-speed trip off the road on Ortega cost Evans nearly three minutes and dropped him to 12th.

That elevated Meeke and Loeb to second and third, with Sordo leading by 16.6 seconds heading to service.

Loeb closed to within 1.3s of Meeke on the Leon street stage, helped by a minor Meeke error in which his Citroen went up on two wheels and drove over a large pot plant on the apex of a hairpin.

Ott Tanak is close behind the two Citroens in the only Toyota not struck by a repeat of last year's overheating problems. Team-mates Jari-Matti Latvala and Esapekka Lappi have struggled badly with power losses and are back in seventh and 10th.

Championship leader Thierry Neuville had to grapple with opening the dusty road, but was staying in touch with the front group in seventh until the Leon street stage just before service.

He slowed and reported a potential engine problem, and his Hyundai's driver's side door also repeatedly flapped open during the stage, dropping him to ninth behind Leon pacesetter Teemu Suninen.

Although Sebastien Ogier is in the unusual position of not opening the road, he felt running second was still a heavy disadvantage and he is fifth - just 1.3s ahead of Andreas Mikkelsen, who was not totally happy with his Hyundai's handling.

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23/10/2018
10:00 | ATP 500 - Vienna
10:00 | ATP 500 - Basel
11:00 | WTA Finals
13:00 | Frances Tiafoe v Kei Nishikori - ATP 500 - Viena
13:30 | Caroline Wozniacki v Petra Kvitova - WTA Finals
14:30 | Cameron Norrie v John Isner - ATP 500 - Viena
15:00 | Elina Svitolina v Karolina Pliskova - WTA Finals
17:00 | Dominic Thiem v Ruben Bemelmans - ATP 500 - Viena
18:55 | AEK Athens - Bayern Munich
18:55 | Young Boys - Valencia
19:00 | Jo-Wilfried Tsonga v Sam Querrey - ATP 500 - Viena
19:00 | Roger Federer v Filip Krajinovic - ATP 500 - Basel
21:00 | Ajax - Benfica
21:00 | Hoffenheim - Olympique Lyon
21:00 | Shakhtar Donetsk - Manchester City
21:00 | Roma - CSKA Moskva
21:00 | Real Madrid - Viktoria Plzen
21:00 | Manchester United - Juventus
24/10/2018
10:00 | ATP 500 - Vienna
10:00 | ATP 500 - Basel
11:00 | WTA Finals
18:55 | Club Brugge - Monaco
18:55 | PSV - Tottenham Hotspur
21:00 | Borussia Dortmund - Atletico Madrid
21:00 | Barcelona - Inter Milan
21:00 | PSG - Napoli
21:00 | Liverpool - Crvena Zvezda
21:00 | Lokomotiv Moskva - Porto
21:00 | Galatasaray - Schalke 04
25/10/2018
10:00 | ATP 500 - Vienna
10:00 | ATP 500 - Basel
11:00 | WTA Finals
18:55 | Zurich - Bayer Leverkusen
18:55 | RB Leipzig - Celtic
18:55 | Zenit - Bordeaux
18:55 | Sporting - Arsenal
18:55 | Milan - Real Betis
21:00 | Rangers - Spartak Moskva
21:00 | Villarreal - Rapid Wien
21:00 | Sevilla - Akhisarspor
21:00 | Olympique Marseille - Lazio
21:00 | Chelsea - BATE
26/10/2018
10:00 | ATP 500 - Vienna
10:00 | ATP 500 - Basel
11:00 | WTA Finals
17:00 | Formula 1 - Mexico Grand Prix - Free Practice 1
21:00 | Formula 1 - Mexico Grand Prix - Free Practice 2
DERBY OF THE WEEK
Barcelona - Real Madrid
Derby of the week
20:45
28/10/2018
Derby of the week
W 2.00    
   W 3.20
The odds are correct at the time of publishing
12:00 21-10-2018 and are subject to change
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