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Ogier crashes in WRC Germany

2013-08-24 12:10

HEADING FOR DISASTER: French VW rally driver Sebastien Ogier takes a hairpin in the 2013 Rally of Germany on August 23 2013 - later in the day he retired after crashing into a vineyard. Image: AFP



TRIER, Germany - Frenchman Sebastien Ogier who dominated Day 1 of the German WRC Rally on
Thursday, crashed out of the race on Friday and will now have to wait at least two more weeks to wrap up his first World title.

Ogier was set to succeed compatriot and nine-times champion Sebastien Loeb with victory in this weekend's race but will not be overly concerned as he holds a healthy 90-point lead over Belgian Thierry Neuville and Jari-Matti Latvala of Finland with four rallies remaining.

"I missed the braking point," admitted the overnight leader. "I didn't have it in my notes. I went into the vineyard a bit and hit something and damaged the front."

CLOSE CALL

He attempted to repair a damaged suspension and began the second special of the day (fourth of the rally) before the car broke down again in the middle of the road which handed the lead to team mate Latvala in a second VW.

Second-placed Neuville, now 2.4sec back, almost crashed into Ogier's broken VW. "It was soon after a high-speed crest and I was surprised to see him there," the Belgian told WRC. "I had to slow down to drive around it and perhaps I slowed too much.

"OK, we're in a good battle now, but I need to get some feeling in the car, I don't feel comfortable all the time."

Ogier will now have to wait at least until the Rally of Australia in two weeks where he will get another opportunity to wrap up the championship.

Spaniard Dani Sordo (Citroen) was third and 15secs behind heading into afternoon specials.

Standings after Stage 5 (Top 10):
1 Jari-Matti Latvala VW Polo 59min12.6s
2 Thierry Neuville Ford Fiesta RS +00min02.4
3 Dani Sordo Citroen +00min15.1
4 Mikko Hirvonen Citroen DS3 +00min28.3
5 Mads Ostberg    Ford Fiesta RS +01min20.3
6 Martin Prokop Ford Fiesta RS +02min45.3
7 Nasser Al-Attiyah WRT Ford Fiesta RS +02min55.1
8 Robert Kubica    Citroen DS3 RRC +03min17.8
9 Elfyn EvansQatar  Ford Fiesta R5 +03min26.1
10 Michal Kosciuszko Ford Fiesta RS +03min42.7
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