A good start to the first tarmac event of the season for Petter and Chris.
The first stage of the morning of day one was won by Ford’s Jari-Matti Latvala on hard compound tyres ideal for the dry stage but he lost the lead on the next to Citroën’s Sebastien Ogier who was fastest through, while Petter and Chris lost time in heavy rainfall after going straight on at a junction. Sebastien Loeb was fastest through SS3, taking the rally lead despite running on a soft compound tyre through a dry stage; the soft version is designed for use in wet or damp conditions.
After midday service the three morning stages were repeated. The Fords of Jari-Matti Latvala and Mikko Hirvonen were to run into problems on the first of these afternoon stages with Hirvonen damaging his suspension after hitting a wall and Latvala suffering engine problems. Petter and Chris had a good run through this stage then lost a couple of seconds in the next after a small moment on a right hand corner but they were still fourth fastest. They then repeated this fourth fastest finish in the last stage of the day, SS6 while Loeb extended his lead with another stage win.
- I’m quite happy with my position after the first day, says Petter Solberg. – This is the first tarmac event with the new car, so I’m about where I expected to be. I’m improving all the time and enjoying it very well, and will continue to do that tomorrow. Did lose some time with the heavy rain on SS2 and also the spin, so sixth is not bad at all. We are the fastest privateer and fighting with works-cars!
Sebastien Loeb is the overnight leader on day one of ADAC Rallye Deutschland, followed by Sebastien Ogier and then Mikko Hirvonen. Petter and Chris finish the day in sixth place.
ADAC Rallye Deutschland continues with eight stages on Saturday. First car is on the road from 0818 local time.