#RMC #2023  🇲🇨 🌏🧡⭐️💯🔝🧡 SS8: TOYOTA REIGNS SUPREME ON THE MONTE!  🇲🇨 🌏🧡⭐️💯🔝🧡

On this second day of the Rallye Monte Carlo, one name stands out: Sébastien Ogier!
With 4 victories on the 6 stages of the day, a trend is starting to emerge. Here is a detailed summary of the stages on Friday 20 January.
A Toyota hat-trick to start the day
Seb Ogier ahead of Elfyn Evans and Kalle Rovanperä: Toyota Gazoo Racing started Day 2 of the 91st Rally Monte-Carlo on a high, by setting the three best times of a completely dry SS3 over 18.33km between Roure, Roubion and Beuil. The eight-time World Champion added 3.2 seconds to the tally of the Welshman and 6.1 to his credit on the young Finn, and reigning world champion. A good way to show who remains the WRC boss … when he comes to play around, between two family obligations across the Rhine.
Ogier in control, despite a small issue…
Sébastien Ogier (Toyota Gazoo Racing) is still in the lead of the 91st edition of Rally Monte-Carlo, after SS4 (Puget-Théniers – Saint-Antonin 1, 19.79km) in which he experienced his first worry of the week : “I have an issue with my hybrid system, so I’m pushing hard to compensate”. This issue did not prevent him from taking his 4th stage win out of four, 2.1 seconds ahead of Welsh teammate Elfyn Evans, and 4.9 seconds ahead of Thierry Neuville (Hyundai Motorsport), more comfortable in this stage than the previous one because it was “more technical”, the Belgian said on the finish line.
Five in a row for Ogier, Neuville 2nd
Five wins in five stages: Sébastien Ogier (Toyota Gazoo Racing) continues to dominate the 91st Rally Monte-Carlo, head and shoulders. He remains the king in office of the WRC (8 world titles), even if he has taken a step back. He is aiming for a record 9th win in the Principality and he has a new runner-up in the general standings after SS5: Thierry Neuville, the Belgian leader of the Hyundai Motorsport team.
Evans ends Ogier’s streak
Four Toyota drivers in the first four spots, but end of series for Sébastien Ogier. The second passage between Roure and Beuil, via Roubion (SS6, 18.33km), allowed Elfyn Evans to put his name on the honor roll of this 91st Rally Monte-Carlo, after five consecutive stage wins for the Frenchman since Thursday evening. Probably because of a breakdown of his hybrid system aboard the Yaris carrying number 17, which deprived him of crucial power for dry and fast roads.
Ogier’s winning march resumes
After leaving a stage win to team-mate Elfyn Evans in SS6, Sébastien Ogier’s festival resumed with a vengeance in SS7, the second passage of the day between Puget-Théniers and Saint-Antonin (19.79km). Best time again for the eight-time world champion, the sixth in seven stages, 1.6 second quicker than the Welshman and 3.1 over Kalle Rovanperä, the reigning world champion. And a 1-2-3 for Toyota Gazoo Racing, still 100% in terms of stage wins in this 91st edition, ahead of the one and only notable driver able to resist the Japanese domination since Thursday evening, Thierry Neuville (Hyundai Motorsport).
Toyota remains in front, Ogier in control
Day 2 of the 91st Rally Monte-Carlo was dominated from start to finish by Toyota Gazoo Racing, on Friday in the Southern Alps, and ended with a stage win for the reigning World Champion, young Finnish star Kalle Rovanperä, in SS8 (Briançonnet- Entrevaux, 14.55km). His first stage win of the year, after the first one also for Elfyn Evans in SS6 at the start of the afternoon. Since the start on Thursday evening, the Japanese team has left nothing to its rivals, Hyundai Motorsport and M-Sport Ford.
“I didn’t push too hard, I just tried to do a clean stage. My car seemed more efficient than this morning”, said Rovanperä, the youngest World Champion in the history of WRC, at the end of SS8, where Sébastien Loeb had won in 2022 ahead of Ogier, just one year ago. He then set off for Monaco with a 36-second debit over his French team-mate, and ten more stages to negotiate on Saturday and Sunday morning.
“I’m very happy, obviously the risk of punctures was higher in this stage, so I took it easy. I am just happy to be able to bring the car back to the service park,” Ogier said a few minutes later. He had punctured a tire in this stage last year, in the heat of a final battle with Loeb, and offered an historic win to his greatest rival.
Saturday morning, when all drivers leave Monaco for the six stages of Day 3, Ogier will also be 37.9 seconds ahead of Thierry Neuville (Hyundai), 3rd, 54.2 seconds ahead of Ott Tänak (M-Sport Ford), 4th, and 1:02.3 minute ahead of Elfyn Evans (Toyota), who suffered a very costly puncture in the morning. This makes it three Toyota drivers in the Top 5, with over 175 timed kilometers to race. Place your bets!
Photos: #ACM_Media
20th January #2023

Leave a Comment