Andreas Mikkelsen Leads after SS2, WRC Rally Australia – 2013

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Andreas Mikkelsen leads the Rally Australia after a couple of successive spectator special stages, at Coffs Harbour.

Although it is too early to rejoice, the Norwegian has managed to lead in a WRC rally for the first time ever. Kris Meeke is behind him, in less than a second and Latvala is third overall. Thierry Neuville & Sebastien Ogier are 4th and 5th respectively.

Citroen WRT‘s new recruit Kris Meeke went fastest through the with the shakedown stage, which was very much dry and dusty. It had not rained in the past 3 three weeks in the region and the rally is expected to trouble the drivers with the dust, if it doesn’t rain during this weekend.

Thierry Neuville was 3rd quickest in Qualifying, and started 8th on the road, said; “Of course the second fastest time in Qualifying would have been better than third, but Kris [Meeke] was on a really big push and I am happy with my position. It was not a perfect run, and we could have gone faster in places, but eighth on the road is not a bad place to be.
Now, we just need to get a good rhythm from the start and take each stage as it comes. My main aim this weekend is to keep hold of my second place in the championship so we will be keeping a close eye on Jari-Matti [Latvala].”
Top ten results at the end of Day 1, SS2.

Pos         No          Driver Time             Diff

1. 9 A. MIKKELSEN            2:45.3  0.0   0.0
2. 3 K. MEEKE 2:46.2 +0.9 +0.9
3. 7 J. LATVALA 2:46.2 +0.5 +1.4
4. 8 S. OGIER 1:23.5 +0.1 +1.5
5. 2 M. HIRVONEN 1:23.7 +0.4 +1.9
6. 11 T. NEUVILLE 1:23.8 +0.8 +2.7
7. 4 M. OSTBERG 1:24.5 +1.9 +4.6
8. 5 E. NOVIKOV 1:25.9 +1.9 +6.5
9. 10 K. AL QASSIMI 1:26.6 +1.6 +8.1
10. 22 N. QUINN 1:28.9 +2.2 +10.3
The frenchman Ogier could win the driver’s championship, provided he makes more than 9 points off Thierry Neuville. Listen to him in this brief video below.

Local driver, Nathan Quinn will open the day tomorrow, while Meeke will be the last of the WRC cars to take start tomorrow morning.

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Post Author: Ashok R

Chief Editor at RalliHeart Media. Motorsport aficionado, Rally nut! Reporting from gravel strewn, slushy, snowy, icy, asphalted roads..