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WRC Monte Carlo: Sebastien Ogier increases lead into final stages

Sebastien Ogier M-Sport Monte Carlo Rally WRC 2018

World Rally champion Sebastien Ogier is just two stages away from kicking off his bid for a sixth-straight title with victory on the Monte Carlo Rally.

The M-Sport Ford Fiesta WRC driver had his lead trimmed to just over half a minute at the end of Saturday's running, but it is back out to 46.2s after a fine pair of stages on Sunday morning.

Ogier was quickest of anyone through SS14 to add 11.5s to his advantage over Ott Tanak, and beat the Toyota driver again despite only going seventh-fastest on SS15.

Tanak was slowest of anyone through SS15, but his second place is not under threat as team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala is just under two minutes back in third.

The Toyota Yaris drivers still run 2-3-4 and Esapekka Lappi has edged clear of Kris Meeke's Citroen.

Lappi started the day 1.6s ahead of Meeke but added 12s to that on SS14 and was just over half a second slower on the next stage to have a decent cushion heading into the final two runs.

Elfyn Evans' hold on sixth place looks less secure as Thierry Neuville continues to close in.

Neuville was second to Ogier on SS14 then won SS15, his fourth stage triumph of the rally.

The Hyundai driver is now just 8.7s behind Ogier's M-Sport team-mate.

Bryan Bouffier suffered a small spin on SS14 but remains a lonely eighth, while Craig Breen's still ninth in his Citroen, several minutes ahead of WRC2 leader Jan Kopecky.

Leading positions after SS15

PosDriverTeamCarGap
1Sebastien Ogier, J.IngrassiaM-Sport Ford WRTFord3h55m08.1s
2Ott Tanak, M.JarveojaToyota Gazoo Racing WRTToyota46.2s
3Jari-Matti Latvala, M.AnttilaToyota Gazoo Racing WRTToyota1m51.7s
4Esapekka Lappi, J.FermToyota Gazoo Racing WRTToyota4m39.9s
5Kris Meeke, P.NagleCitroen Total Abu Dhabi WRTCitroen4m52.9s
6Elfyn Evans, D.BarrittM-Sport Ford WRTFord5m15.7s
7Thierry Neuville, N.GilsoulHyundai Shell Mobis WRTHyundai5m24.4s
8Bryan Bouffier, X.PanseriM-Sport Ford WRTFord6m06.8s
9Craig Breen, S.MartinCitroen Total Abu Dhabi WRTCitroen9m15.5s
10Jan Kopecky, P.DreslerSkoda Motorsport IISkoda15m35.3s


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