Juho Hanninen is edging away from the field in increasingly difficult conditions on Rally Azores.
While the middle test of this morning's opening three-stage loop was canceled due to livestock in the road, SS4 brought rain and SS6 thick fog and mud.
Skoda driver Hanninen was quickest on both stages, putting him into a 9.7sec lead over Skoda UK's Andreas Mikkelsen, who has moved back past Bruno Magalhaes (Peugeot Portugal) for second after resolving yesterday's power steering issue.
Magalhaes is now third, just 1.2sec ahead of the second factory Skoda of Jan Kopecky.
The rest of the field has fallen away from the lead group. Guy Wilks had hoped that dropping positions last night to get a better position in the running order today would be beneficial, but this morning's rain spoiled that plan, and in any case he stopped and retired on SS6.