Meeke and Nagle win Rally de Espana

Meeke and Nagle win Rally de Espana
Team Citroen Total Abu Dhabi World Rally drivers and crew celebrate the second victory this season.

salou - Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi enjoyed a consistent race, ensuring the third Citroën C3 WRC made it to the finish of this year's Rally de Espana

Published: Sun 8 Oct 2017, 8:38 PM

Last updated: Sun 8 Oct 2017, 10:54 PM

Kris Meeke and Paul Nagle swept to five stage wins out of six as they dominated the final leg of Rally de Espana.
They therefore completed their second win in the Citroën C3 WRC this season. Thanks to the sixth position secured by Stéphane Lefebvre and Gabin Moreau, the Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT ended up with the best Manufacturers' result at this round.
The final leg of Rally de Espana featured six stages. As the two runs on L'Albiol, Riudecanyes and Santa Marina were contested without a service period, the Citroën Total Abu Dhabi WRT drivers opted to take five hard compound Michelin Pilot Sport tyres.
The day's opening stage, held whilst it was still dark, went very well for Meeke. The Northern Irishman's enjoyment of these conditions showed as he picked up another stage win.
Meeke then added further wins on the next two stages to extend his advantage over Sébastien Ogier and Ott Tänak: at the end of the first loop, he had moved 23.9s clear of the Frenchman.
Building on the experience acquired on yesterday's tarmac stages, Stéphane Lefebvre began the day by upping his pace and putting pressure on Mads Østberg. The two rivals set the same time on SS14, then Stéphane went quicker on the next two stages. Meanwhile, the retirements of Lappi and Neuville, caught out by the difficulties of the Catalan roads, meant the talented young Frenchman moved up to sixth place, 16s behind Østberg.
Unfortunately, Stéphane wasn't able to give his all right to the very end. On SS17, he had a hydraulics problem, and then lost the intercom on the next stage. From that point onwards, he focussed on making sure of finishing in sixth place.
Meanwhile, Meeke continued to put on a sparkling performance, collecting another two stage wins (SS17/SS18). On the Power Stage, he eased off quite a bit and took no risks at all. He nonetheless set the second fastest time to seal the overall win, finishing 28s ahead of Sébastien Ogier and 33s clear of Ott Tänak.
Sheikh Khalid Al Qassimi enjoyed a consistent race, ensuring the third Citroën C3 WRC made it to the finish of this year's Rally de España. Increasingly comfortable on tarmac, the Abu Dhabi driver finished in 17th place overall.

1. Meeke / Nagle (Citroën C3 WRC) 3:01:21.1 
2. Ogier / Ingrassia (Ford Fiesta WRC) +28.0 
3. Tänak / Jarveoja (Ford Fiesta WRC) +33.0 
4. Hänninen / Lindstrom (Toyota Yaris WRC) +54.1 
5. Østberg / Eriksen (Ford Fiesta WRC) +2:26.2 
6. Lefebvre / Moreau (Citroën C3 WRC) +2:43.0 
7. Evans / Barritt (Ford Fiesta WRC) +4:37.4 
8. Suninen / Markkula (Ford Fiesta R5) +8:22.7 
9. Kopecky / Dresler (Skoda Fabia R5) +8:54.5 
10. Veiby / Skjaermoen (Skoda Fabia R5) +9:04.8

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