Hirvonen stays in charge

2012-10-20 19:52
Mikko Hirvonen (File)

Olbia - Finland's Mikko Hirvonen, driving a Citroen, maintained his lead in the Rally of Italy in Sardinia on Saturday, finishing the day almost a minute and a half ahead of Russia's Evgeny Novikov in a Ford Fiesta.

Estonia's Ott Tanak, in another Ford, was in third spot, well over two minutes off the pace after 14 of the 16 special stages at the gravel event.

Norway's Mads Ostberg won four of the day's six specials -- SS9, SS11, SS12 and SS14 -- to move up to fourth position in his Ford Fiesta.

"I'm very happy with the day, everything is working well and we've been able to push without doing anything stupid," Ostberg told

Sebastien Loeb, who claimed his ninth successive world drivers title on home ground in France a fortnight ago, crashed out of the race during Friday's third special stage.

The Citroen driver blamed an incorrect pace note for being too fast through the corner where his hopes of a ninth victory in this year's championship went up in smoke.

Sunday's action consists of two runs.

Rally of Italy standings after Saturday's six special stages:

1. Mikko Hirvonen (FIN) Citroen DS3 3hr 10min 51.7sec, 2. Evgeny Novikov (RUS) Ford Fiesta RS at 1min 28.2sec, 3. Ott Tanak (EST) Ford Fiesta RS 2:20.6, 4. Mads Ostberg (NOR) Ford Fiesta RS 3:48.3, 5. Sebastien Ogier (FRA) Skoda Fabia 2000 4:30.5, 6. Chris Atkinson (AUS) Mini Cooper 4:34.4, 7. Andreas Mikkelsen (NOR) Skoda Fabia S2000 6:06.2, 8. Martin Prokop (CZE) Ford Fiesta RS 9:18.9, 9. Petter Solberg (NOR) Ford Fiesta RS 10:15.0, 10. Karl Kruuda (EST) Ford Fiesta S2000 10:56.6

Stage winners:

Loeb 1 (SS1), Hirvonen 4 (SS2, SS3, SS4, SS8), Ogier 1 (SS5), Novikov 3 (SS6, SS7, SS10), Ostberg 4 (SS9, SS11, SS12, SS14), Latvala 1 (SS13)


Read News24’s Comments Policy publishes all comments posted on articles provided that they adhere to our Comments Policy. Should you wish to report a comment for editorial review, please do so by clicking the 'Report Comment' button to the right of each comment.

Comment on this story
Comments have been closed for this article.
Live Video Streaming
  • Blitz
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @00:00
  • SS1
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @01:00
  • SS2
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @02:00
  • SS3
    Mon, 24 Nov 2014 @03:00
Video Highlights
Sport Talk

Live scoring


Quiz: Test your Rio Olympics memory!

Think you know what went on at the Rio Olympics? Prove it by tackling Sport24's ridiculously impossible yet highly addictive post-Games quiz!


Rio Olympics

GALLERY: SA's Rio Olympic medallists
As it happened: Rio Olympics - Day 17
Selecting 6 numbers turned Britain into Olympic superpower
Caster cranks up the heat in Rio semi
Love 2 Meet
Sport24 on Twitter

Follow Sport24 news on Twitter


Follow all the action from the 2016 Rio Olympics. The highs, the lows, the tears, the smiles as the world's greatest athletes compete for gold, silver and bronze.

Latest blogs

Hypothetically, given the same cars to drive, who is the most talented current Formula One driver in your opinion?

Twitter Follow Sport24 on Twitter

Facebook "Like" Sport24's Facebook page

WIN Enter and win with Sport24!

BlackBerry Stay in the loop on your BlackBerry

RSS Feeds Sport news delivered really simply.

There are new stories on the homepage. Click here to see them.