It was just a matter of time – Citroën was poised to introduce mild version of team orders, basically telling their drivers to use their brains and to avoid making stupid mistakes. The ones known as Fordies.
That means Sebastien Loeb is guaranteed victory in Argentina, unless he decides to turn left instead of right a la Portugal and retire. But he should not worry about Mikko Hirvonen and his apparent push against Frenchman’s authority and position.
All this helped Loeb increase his lead over Hirvonen. Or rather, Hirvonen eased the pressure, enabling Loeb to put more gap while both drivers slowed down a bit. After DNF and DNQ in Portugal it’s easy to understand Citroën’s wish to bring points back home safely.
Dani Sordo is still holding on to third spot and is on course to great result for Ford, putting more and more irony into “blue oval”‘s seaon with each new stage he completes. Undoubtedly, Spaniard is ranking very high on driver market and this rally is maybe his best ticket for factory seat in 2013.
Mads Ostberg is out of podium battle with over 1 minute and 19 seconds gap to Sordo, but he is more than ready to embrace any chance should the leading trio run into trouble. Or use illegal clutches. Or equally illegal turbine wheels. He did it once, he is sure able to do it again. He would be Mad(s) not to!
In the battle for Rally 2 glory, Thierry Neuville is leading Petter Solberg by 2 minutes and 20 seconds, followed by top ranked Mini driver Armindo Araujo. Further 7 and a half minutes behind is Evgeny Novikov. And yeah, those are Dakar-alike gaps, not much fun.