Sebastien Ogier's push for victory in the Catalunya Rally has ended after the Frenchman stopped with damage to the rear of his car on SS8.
Ogier had kept leader Sebastien Loeb in sight on yesterday's mixed-surface leg, and despite the World Champion's awesome reputation on the asphalt stages that comprise the rest of the rally, the Citroen Junior driver was still determined to try and push Loeb for the win.
After losing four seconds to Loeb on today's first stage, putting him 8sec adrift overall, Ogier was trimming a little time back on the early splits of SS8 La Mussara when he came to a halt, with initial reports suggesting an impact on the right rear of the Citroen C4. Ogier and co-driver Julien Ingrassia effected repairs on the stage and restarted, but lost 15 minutes.
Ogier's problems leave Loeb with a 42sec lead over the rest of the field. Petter Solberg (Solberg Citroen) is now up to second as Jari-Matti Latvala lost a little pace this morning having run too hard a setup on his Ford.