Ogier retakes lead from Latvala


Sebastien Ogier reclaimed the Rally Australia lead from Volkswagen team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala as the World Rally Championship field faced a tyre conundrum on Saturday afternoon. The possibility of rain convinced all the WRC frontrunners to lean towards soft tyres for the second loop of leg two, but instead they found sunshine on the 30-mile Nambucca stage. While Latvala was running entirely on softs, Ogier used a mixture of hards and softs and fared far better than his VW team-mate. Hampered badly by tyre wear, Latvala lost 13.4 seconds and the rally lead to Ogier, who was quickest on the short Valla stage that followed as well. That moved Ogier into a 10.3s lead heading to the evening's superspecials. Citroen driver Kris Meeke managed to disrupt VW's domination again when he reclaimed third from Andreas Mikkelsen following a minor error by the Polo driver on Valla. Meeke is now 1.3s ahead. Behind Mikko Hirvonen in fifth, there was a change in the sixth-place fight too, as Mads Ostberg overhauled Hayden Paddon. Thierry Neuville's comeback drive has now brought him back up to eighth, despite an impact with a post on Valla that caused some damage to his Hyundai. He outpaced Elfyn Evans through the afternoon and then benefited from Robert Kubica losing a minute with a trip off the road on Valla, when he was distracted by a yellow flag system test and missed a braking point.