Sébastien Ogier fastest in Rally Monte Carlo shakedown

Sébastien Ogier fastest in Rally Monte Carlo shakedown

Sébastien Ogier
Sébastien Ogier / Source: M-Sport

Sébastien Ogier was fastest in Rally Monte Carlo shakedown. The race is the first round of the 2017 World Rally Championship.

That was Ogier’s first appearance with the new Ford Fiesta WRC prepared by M-Sport. His time was 2:18.1min or 4.2sec quicker than Andreas Mikkelsen. Sebastien’s teammate Ott Tänak was third fastest, 1.9sec behind the Norwegian, who is driving Skoda Fabia R5 at the first WRC round.

The shakedown’s weather conditions were mainly dry. Teams expect snow at a higher altitude during the stages on Friday and Saturday. The results are not taken as indication what might follow in the event.

Most drivers used winter or super soft tyres

They preferred to keep the studded tyres for the race itself.

“We went on a slick. It is completely the wrong choice, but we want to keep our tyres for the rally. Normally we have enough studs, but in shakedown here, if you use them and you get a puncture or you damage one, that’s one gone and that can put you at a disadvantage”, Kris Meeke explained, quoted by wrc.com.

The Citroen driver was 20sec slower than Ogier and slowest of all the 2017-specification cars.

43 Michelin tyres are available for the entire rally – including the shakedown

The crews have 20 Pilot Sport S5 (soft tyres), 24 SS5 (super soft tyres), 12 Pilot Alpin A41 (non-studded snow tyres) and 24 A41C (studded tyres). Drivers in general decided to conserve their stock of winter tyres by opting to run on super soft compounds.

“Since the result of the shakedown has no impact on the rally itself, we decided to conserve our allocation of studded tyres”, Yves Matton said. “The drivers didn’t have an easy job. They had to cope with icy sections without damaging the cars. Mission accomplished for us and there are a number of positives we can take away from this shakedown.”

Rally Monte Carlo starts tomorrow with two stages, which start at 20:14 local time.

1. Sébastien Ogier Ford Fiesta 2min 18.1sec
2. Andreas Mikkelsen Skoda Fabia R5 2min 22.3sec
3. Ott Tänak Ford Fiesta 2min 24.2sec
4. Jari-Matti Latvala Toyota Yaris 2min 25.2sec
5. Hayden Paddon Hyundai i20 Coupe 2min 25.8sec
6. Dani Sordo Hyundai i20 Coupe 2min 26.0sec
7. Juho Hänninen Toyota Yaris 2min 26.6sec
8. Thierry Neuville Hyundai i20 Coupe 2min 26.9sec
9. Eric Camilli Ford Fiesta R5 2min 29.4sec
10. Jan Kopecky Skoda Fabia R5 2min 29.9sec