Corsica WRC: Neuville eats into Ogier's advantage

Sebastien Ogier will take a lead of 46 seconds into the final day of Rally Corsica, after a charging Thierry Neuville beat the Frenchman by 13 seconds on Saturday's final stage.

Corsica WRC: Neuville eats into Ogier's advantage

Ogier started the Saturday morning loop by extending his lead to almost a minute over Neuville through the second run of the La Porta-Valle di Rostino stage, which was hit by rain prior to the first runs.

But the Belgian responded in emphatic style on the shorter SS8, as he beat the rally leader by a full 13s, heading a Hyundai 1-2 with teammate Dani Sordo only two seconds slower.

"I went off a little in the beginning and hit some stones," Neuville admitted. "I had a vibration but then it went. I tried to push and I know I'm good in these conditions."

Said Ogier: "Just wanted to finish the day in the tricky conditions. That was really cruising for us."

It meant Ogier's lead was whittled down from 59.5s to 46.5s with just Sunday's two stages remaining, Neuville also easing away from third-place man Andreas Mikkelsen.

The Norwegian, third fastest on SS7 and fifth on SS8, now finds himself 1m08s adrift of Volkswagen teammate Ogier, with the German marque's third driver Jari-Matti Latvala a further 33s back in fourth.

Citroen's Craig Breen continues to hold a strong fifth, just over two minutes shy of the lead, followed by the Hyundais of Hayden Paddon and Dani Sordo.

The Spaniard overhauled Eric Camilli (M-Sport Ford) for seventh on SS7, and is only 21s behind Paddon.

Completing the top 10 ahead of the final two stages are Mads Ostberg (M-Sport Ford) and WRC2 leader Elfyn Evans.

Standings after SS8:

Pos Driver Car Time/Gap
1. FRA Sebastien Ogier Volkswagen 3:27:10.0
2. BEL Thierry Neuville Hyundai +46.5
3. NOR Andreas Mikkelsen Volkswagen +1:08.0
4. FIN Jari-Matti Latvala Volkswagen +1:41.3
5. IRL Craig Breen Citroen +2.04.9
6. NZL Hayden Paddon Hyundai +2:42.7
7. ESP Dani Sordo  Hyundai +3:03.9
8. FRA Eric Camilli Ford +4:18.2
9. NOR Mads Ostberg Ford +5:10.5
10. GBR Elfyn Evans Ford +5:47.0
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