Sebastien Ogier's preparations for the Rally de France were interrupted when he damaged the front of his recce car yesterday.
The Frenchman fell foul of the metal posts the organizers have placed on the inside of corners in an effort to stop the drivers cutting corners and dragging dirt into the road on the Strasbourg-based event. An impact with one of the metal posts damaged the radiator on the Mitsubishi Lancer the Citroen team runs as a recce car.
Ogier was unperturbed by the damage. He said: "We have had to change our pace notes from last year. The organizers have put the metal fence posts in each corner, which is better because it means drivers cannot cut the corners or at least you would need some reinforcement in the car to do this. It [the route] is better than last year, the roads are drier and the sun is out."
Ogier's teammate Sebastien Loeb admitted he too had taken a close look at the fence posts to see how close he could get in an effort to shave time off at each corner.
The rally gets under way with a ceremonial start in the center of Strasbourg on Thursday night.