Triple World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier has started round 12 of the 2015 FIA World Rally Championship, the RallyRACC Catalunya – Costa Daurada by winning the opening stage of the event.
The Volkswagen Motorsport driver set a time of 3 min 37.8 sec over the 3.2km test which was 2.1 seconds faster than his closest rival Thierry Neuville, who had to tackle the stage without the aid of his handbrake. Team-mate Andreas Mikkelsen is a further 0.8sec behind in third.
“It’s good to start like this but at the last round in Corsica we started in the lead but the rest of the weekend wasn’t good. The rally really starts tomorrow but it was nice to be here in front of a huge crowd. It was a clean drive and I’m going to go for it tomorrow,” said Ogier.
Kris Meeke took fourth 3.3 seconds off the lead with Robert Kubica and Mads Ostberg in fifth and sixth respectively. Jari Matti Latvala went seventh fastest 5.2 seconds off the lead while shakedown winner Hayden Paddon was just behind in eight.
Dani Sordo and WRC2 leader Nasser Al-Attiyah rounded out the top ten while Quentin Gilbert leads the JWRC. After the overnight halt in Salou, drivers face eight predominantly gravel stages tomorrow.