WRC-2014 has begun! Round 1 Rallye Monte-Carlo has kicked off, with the shakedown stage of 3..52km located in the village of Chateauvieux – six kilometres south of Ogier’s hometown of Gap. The weather condition for the stage was absolutely dry.
Reigning WRC Champion Sebastien Ogier topped the shakedown stage with the time of 2m 15.3s, behind him were the two factory Citroen drivers, Kris Meeke and Mads Ostberg setting identical time 2m 16.5s just 1.2s slower than Ogier, both the full season Citroen drivers were on a flying start to the season.
Everyones' eyes were fixed on the Korean car maker Hyundai i20 WRC, who went on competitively for the first time on a WRC stage. Thierry Neuville piloted his i20 WRC to a sixth fastest stage time, while his team mate Dani Sordo was locked up in a battle with Andreas Mikkelsen and settled for eighth fastest time. M-Sport driver Mikko Hirvonen went seventh fastest in his Ford Fiesta WRC. Bryan Bouffier rounded up final in the the top 10 in his privateer Fiesta WRC.
Top 10 Shakedown Times
|1||S. Ogier||VW Polo R WRC||2m 15.3s|
|=2||K. Meeke||Citroen DS3 WRC||2m 16.5s|
|=2||M. Ostberg||Citroen DS3 WRC||2m 16.5s|
|4||J-M. Latvala||VW Polo R WRC||2m 18.2s|
|5||R. Kubica||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||2m 18.3s|
|6||T. Neuville||Hyundai i20 WRC||2m 18.4s|
|7||M. Hirvonen||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||2m 18.8s|
|=8||D. Sordo||Hyundai i20 WRC||2m 20.4s|
|=8||A. Mikkelsen||VW Polo R WRC||2m 20.4s|
|10||B. Bouffier||Ford Fiesta RS WRC||2m 21.9s|
Well this is just begining, real Monte-Carlo begins from tomorrow, as weather is unpredictable and tyre choice will be as tricky as driving on the stages. Thats all for now have a Happy WRC Weekend!