Australia WRC: Mikkelsen leads into Friday evening

Andreas Mikkelsen will have an overnight lead after the first day of running at Rally Australia, after holding station during the afternoon loop of forest stages.

Mikkelsen and co-driver built on their morning lead to the tune of three seconds heading into the two Super Specials this evening, the Volkswagen pairing now leading Sebastien Ogier by 16.8.

Ogier staged a mini fightback by moving into second ahead of Thierry Neuville thanks to a pair of stage wins, while Hayden Paddon dropped from second to fourth between SS8 and SS9.

Dani Sordo, who was second this morning, slipped down to eighth after being whacked with a 20-second penalty for being two minutes late to the start of SS4.

Mikkelsen kicked off the afternoon loop in style, winning SS6 by 0.3s from Jari-Matti Latvala and Ogier. He then dropped just his second stage of the day on SS7, slipping to third while Neuville racked up his first stage win of the event.

Mikkelsen was third again on SS8, complaining of a water bottle getting stuck at his feet, while Ogier stepped up for his win of the day.

Ogier won again on SS9, the final forest stage of the day, top jump from fourth to second overall. The Frenchman still trails Mikkelsen by 16.8s.

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About this article
Series WRC
Event Rally Australia
Article type Leg report