Sebastien Ogier continues to lead the Rally of France - but Dani Sordo is closing in again.
Although Citroen driver Ogier managed to pull out a 9.5-second advantage over the chasing Mini yesterday afternoon, Sordo was quicker on today's opener Graviere de Bischwiller, fastest of all on Vignoble de Cleebourg, then equaled Ogier on the Haguenau street stage. The gap between them stands at 4.5sec with three stages to go.
"That's not bad, but we need to be faster if we want to win," said Sordo. "I'm pushing hard, I just have to keep up the pressure."
Ogier said he was relishing the fight and expected it to go down to the wire.
"I think it will be close because Dani is pushing hard," he said. "He had a good drive this morning. It's good fun."
Petter Solberg (Solberg Citroen) and Jari-Matti Latvala (Ford) remain third and fourth, with Ford yet to apply the team orders that will elevate title contender Mikko Hirvonen up a place from his current fifth.
Armindo Araujo crashed his Motorsport Italia Mini out of seventh on the first stage of the morning, where Dennis Kuipers (FERM Ford) cemented his potential career-best sixth by setting a surprise second-fastest time.
Also flying is Ken Block, as two top-six stage times have brought the Monster Ford up to ninth.
Leading positions after SS20:
Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap
1. Sebastien Ogier Citroen 2h54m30.9s
2. Dani Sordo Mini + 4.9s
3. Petter Solberg Solberg Citroen + 1m15.1s
4. Jari-Matti Latvala Ford + 1m32.9s
5. Kris Meeke Mini + 3m15.0s
6. Dennis Kuipers FERM Ford + 6m15.4s
7. Henning Solberg Stobart Ford + 6m47.0s
8. Mads Ostberg Stobart Ford + 7m23.4s
9. Ken Block Monster Ford + 8m03.6s
10. Pierre Campana France Mini + 8m10.8s