Ogier clinches Acropolis victory

Ogier clinches Acropolis victory

20th Jun 2011 7:00 am

Sebastien Ogier won a final-day battle with Sebastien Loeb to take an Acropolis Rally victory.

Sebastien Ogier won a final-day battle with Citroen team-mate Sebastien Loeb to take an Acropolis Rally victory which underlined that he is still a threat for this year's title.
 
Loeb had made a low-key start to the event, running in the lower part of the top five as independent Citroen driver Petter Solberg stormed into a huge lead on day 2. But when Solberg struggled with running first on the road the following day, it was Ogier who hunted down and caught the 2003 champion, gaining nearly a minute on Solberg in just three stages.
 
Ogier took the lead on day 3, before backing off to hand it to Loeb so that the champion had to run first on the road on the final day. At first it looked like this strategy might have been misguided, as Loeb managed to match Ogier's pace on the final day's opening loop. But over the final three stages Loeb found his road position more costly, and Ogier was able to pull away and clinch the win by 10 seconds.
 
Loeb's second place was his 100th podium in the World Rally Championship. Solberg faded to fourth in the end, as Mikko Hirvonen came through to third for Ford, closing to within 3s of Loeb by the finish.
 
Hirvonen's team-mate Jari-Matti Latvala was second behind Solberg until transmission and then turbo problems on Friday and Saturday cost him a massive 13 minutes.  The Stobart Fords of Henning Solberg and Matthew Wilson completed the top six. Kimi Raikkonen (Ice 1 Citroen) had a fairly serene run to seventh on his return to the series.
 
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