Thursday, May 23, 2024

Rallying-Ogier Takes The Lead In Portugal After Rovanpera Rolls – News18

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Published By: Sports Desk

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Overnight leader Kalle Rovanpera rolled out of Rally Portugal contention on Saturday as Toyota team mate Sebastien Ogier took over at the top with his sights set on a record sixth success in the event.

Overnight leader Kalle Rovanpera rolled out of Rally Portugal contention on Saturday as Toyota team mate Sebastien Ogier took over at the top with his sights set on a record sixth success in the event.

The eight times world champion, now competing part-time as is Rovanpera, led Hyundai’s Ott Tanak by 11.9 seconds going into Sunday’s final leg on the fast gravel roads around Porto and Matosinhos.

Hyundai’s world championship leader Thierry Neuville was in third place and 59.5 seconds behind Tanak, with the Belgian’s main title rival Elfyn Evans a distant sixth overall.

Toyota had started the day one-two-three in the standings but Rovanpera misjudged a right-hander, hit a tree and rolled with the crew unhurt and expecting to rejoin on Sunday.

Team mate Takamoto Katsuta, third on Friday night, meanwhile suffered a broken suspension after hitting a rock.

That left Ogier as Toyota’s sole remaining hope and he took four stage wins out of the day’s nine.

Victory on Sunday would be one more than Finnish great Markku Alen achieved in Portugal.

“It’s been a good day,” said the Frenchman. “A tricky one, we didn’t expect so many things happening today. Unfortunately on Toyota’s side it was not a perfect day. For me it was good, but we lost two cars.

“We have to try and finish the job tomorrow now.”

Sunday features four stages.

(This story has not been edited by News18 staff and is published from a syndicated news agency feed – Reuters)

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