Ogier ends Saturday with 30-second Rally GB lead
WRC Wales Rally

Ogier ends Saturday with 30-second Rally GB lead

Sebastien Ogier will enter the final day of Wales Rally GB with a 33.8-second lead over Ott Tanak, as he bids to win the event for a fourth straight year.

World champion Ogier had his lead eroded on three stages in a row - which included Tanak taking 5.8s out of the Frenchman on the seven-mile SS14 Gartheinog stage - after Saturday's initial loop, but responded on SS15 with the fastest time by 5.8s.

Ogier then recorded the second-fastest time on the short 1.11-mile test around Cholmondeley Castle - which marked the first time since 1999 that a stage of the rally had taken place in England - to finish the day with more than half a minute in hand over Tanak in his Volkswagen Polo R.

Tanak had set the pace on the repeat runs of Pantperthog, Dyfi and Gartheiniog in his DMACK-shod Ford Fiesta but dropped back in the afternoon's final two stages and now looks likely to consolidate second, rather than challenge Ogier for the lead, on the final day.

Thierry Neuville spent the afternoon stretching his advantage over team-mate Hayden Paddon in their private battle for the final podium spot.

But Paddon clawed back a couple of seconds over the final two stages to end the day 12.6s in hand.

Kris Meeke ended Saturday an isolated fifth after dropping away from the podium fight, the Briton cutting a frustrated figure having been unable to keep pace with the leading pack in his PH Sport Citroen DS3.

The third Hyundai i20 of Dani Sordo holds sixth ahead of M-Sport's Mads Ostberg, while Volkswagen driver Jari-Matti Latvala continued his fightback after a driveshaft failure on Friday afternoon and is 7.2s away from the Norwegian in eighth.

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