WRC – Rally Guanajuato Mexico Day 1 : Ogier Leads Citroen Domination

Citroen dominated the opening day of Rally Guanajuato Mexico, winning all the 10 stages competed on the day. After Ford’s dominance in the opening round in Sweden, Citroen showed why they are the defending champion by putting a great all round performance.

Sebastien Ogier, Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2011.

Citroen’s charge was led by Sebastien Ogier, after he finished the day on top of the standings by winning 5 stages. However, he faces a daunting task of running first and cleaning the road for others once Rally Mexico continues on Day 2. He was also lucky not to be penalized for an infringement after he turned left to drive into the service park rather than right to head into the regroup at midday service. Although the offense was a breach of the rules, Ogier was adamant that it was a simple mistake and turned around as soon as he realised he had taken a wrong turn. As a result no documentation was presented to the stewards for further action.

Sebastien Loeb in action, Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2011.

Defending champion Sebastien Loeb finished the day in 2nd place, only 2.3 seconds behind his teammate. Loeb won 4 stages on the day and will be looking to add to a five consecutive rally wins here in Mexico. He will be in a greater position than Ogier for the 2nd day as he will be starting in second and doesn’t have much disadvantage of cleaning the road.

Mikko Hirvonen, Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2011.

Winner of the opening round in Sweden, Mikko Hirvonen struggled after having to run first and cleaning the road for others. Hirvonen complained of oversteering throughout the stages and conceded that it will be a tough battle to compete against the Citroens in Mexico. He is currently 3rd in after the 1st day, by a large margin of 1:22.2 sceonds behind Ogier.

Petter Solberg, Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2011.

Petter Solberg won the opening Guanajuato Street Stage and was on course to finish 3rd at the end of the day but was very unlucky after an electrical glitch caused him almost seven minutes. This dropped him from 3rd into 12th, with an insurmountable gap of 7:36.00 seconds behind the leader thus ruling him out of contention.

Jari-Matti Latvala, Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2011.

Hirvonen’s teammate Jari-Matti Latvala ended the day in 4th place, 2:53.6 seconds behind Ogier. Latvala suffered a puncture in SS4 and lost almost three minutes. Evgeny Novikov finished the day in 5th place behind Latvala, followed by Henning Solberg in 6th.

Mads Ostberg in action, Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2011.

After a great performance by Mads Ostberg in Sweden, he finished just outside the top 10 in Mexico, ending the day in 11th place. Ostberg’s teammate Matthew Wilson at one stage was an impressive fourth only to stop on SS7 with a suspected electrical fault.

Sebastien Loeb, Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2011.

Rally Guanajuato Mexico resumes for the 2nd day with Citroen looking to extend their lead with their two Citro├źn Total WRT drivers running in 1st and 2nd place. Ford will be hoping to secure valuable points and salvage something for their championship aspiration.

Jari-Matti Latvala, Rally Guanajuato Mexico 2011.

Photo : Citroen WRC, worldrallypics.com

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