Sebastien Loeb becomes the oldest driver to lead a WRC round


Sebastien Loeb became at 46 the oldest driver to lead a round of the world rally championship after ending Friday’s opening leg of Rally Turkey with a 1.2 second advantage over Hyundai team mate Thierry Neuville.

The Frenchman, a nine-time world champion and three-time Rally Turkey winner who now races only in selected events, was competing for the first time since January’s Monte Carlo season-opener.

Turkey is the fifth round of the championship.

“I didn’t expect to be leading tonight,” he told the wrc.com website after the two short and dusty evening speed tests totaling a mere 25.22 kilometers.

“The last stage, I had a lot of pressure at the start because we didn’t find the road so good. I had precise notes so I was able to do it and leading the rally tonight is the best thing that can happen.”

Toyota’s championship leader Sebastien Ogier, who won six titles in a row after compatriot Loeb retired from full-time rallying, was in third place and a tenth of a second behind Neuville.

Team mates Elfyn Evans and Kalle Rovanpera were fourth and fifth.

Estonian world champion Ott Tanak was in seventh place for Hyundai but only 4.8 seconds off the lead.

Saturday is the rally’s longest leg, covering 107.38km west of Marmaris with a loop of three coastal stages in the morning and repeated again in the afternoon with a service stop in between.

The overall positions after leg one are reversed to set the road order for the second leg.

“Running first on the road, it was slippery like we expected so it was definitely challenging,” said Ogier.



Source link

Discover

Sponsor

Latest

Pelosi, Mnuchin talk about relief bill

Speaker Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., is pictured after a television interview in Russell Building on Friday, August 14, 2020.Tom Williams | CQ-Roll Call, Inc....

Unemployment system fell short during pandemic. It could buckle again

Florida resident Joseph Louis at a May 22 protest in Miami Beach asking the state to fix its unemployment system.Joe Raedle | Getty...

US sanctions on Ant Group are likely to be ‘largely symbolic’

An employee scans a quick response (QR) code displayed on the Ant Group's Alipay app. Ant Group is preparing for a dual initial...

Q&A With Nissan Designer Alfonso Albaisa

Nissan is back with a fresh, conceptual take on its most iconic sports car. It is called the Nissan Z Proto, and it...