Portugal WRC: Neuville takes points lead with win
Thierry Neuville has taken the championship lead in WRC after claiming his second win of the season in Portugal.
The Hyundai driver scored 29 points as he was second-fastest in the Power Stage and is now 19 points ahead of the non-scoring Sebastien Ogier, who crashed out on Friday.
Neuville started the day with a 39.8s lead over M-Sport driver Elfyn Evans, and had a trouble-free run to finish the event with a gap of 40 seconds.
Evans meanwhile had to turn his attention towards the charging Teemu Suninen, who inherited third before the start of the day after Dani Sordo was given a 10-second penalty for dislodging two bales in the SS8 street stage.
Despite starting Sunday 22.1s behind Evans, teammate Suninen topped one of the day's five stages and was only 8.4s adrift before the Power Stage.
While he couldn't challenge Evans for second, Suninen still celebrated his maiden podium finish in WRC.
Sordo couldn't recover from his penalty and was left to fight against Toyota's Esapekka Lappi for fourth.
The duo traded places three times in five stages, but it was Lappi, who topped the day-starting SS16 and the Power Stage and was second in two other tests, that ended up ahead.
Citroen duo Mads Ostberg and Craig Breen took sixth and seventh, three and five minutes adrift respectively.
Dominant WRC2 winner Pontus Tidemand was eighth overall followed by his main class rivals Lukasz Pieniazek and Stephane Lefebvre.
Ogier, Jari-Matti Latvala and Andreas Mikkelsen were all running under Rally2 regulations, with Ogier and Latvala taking a stage win each.
|2||Elfyn Evans||M-Sport Ford||40.0s|
|3||Teemu Suninen||M-Sport Ford||47.3s|
|10||Stephane Lefebvre||Citroen R5||16m34.3s|
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About this article
|Article type||Leg report|