Ogier leads rally of Turkey

Ogier leads rally of TurkeyFrom Citroen Press [ 16/04/2010 ].
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At the end of the first day of the Rally of Turkey, Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia occupy first place overall. Kimi Räikkönen and Kaj Lindström finish the first leg in eighth place with the Citroën Junior Team’s second C4 WRC. The first day of the Rally of Turkey took the crews 50 kilometres to the north east of the service park, which was located in the Istanbul suburb of Pendik. The 98.42-kilometre competitive route, on the Asian side of Istanbul, took in two identical loops of four stages plus a spectator superspecial.

Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia were able to make their mark on stages that were new to all the
crews this year. The French crew started off at a careful pace before increasing their speed to claim three
fastest stage times. The former Junior World Rally Champion took the overall lead after SS3 and
managed to hang onto it right up to the first overnight halt.

“We showed good pace all day,” said Ogier, who is currently fifth in the drivers’ championship standings.
“This morning, I tried not to take any stupid risks. On the second loop I tried to stretch out a lead, but
then we had a bit of a scare over a crest on SS8. Tomorrow, we’re going to have to cope with mixed
asphalt and gravel stages. We’ll also see what effect our position of first on the road will have on our
performance.”

After scoring their first WRC points together on the Jordan Rally, Kimi Räikkönen and Kaj Lindström
started this fourth round of the World Rally Championship filled with confidence. The Finnish crew found
a pace very close to that of drivers with much more experience, ending up eighth overall at the end of the
day.

“I’m pleased with the speed that we were able to find at the end of the second loop,” reported the winner
of the 2005 Turkish Formula One Grand Prix. “We’re making a lot of progress with the pace notes. This
morning, we only made a few corrections to the notes over the course of the loop. I feel more and more
confident, and this can be seen by our gap to the top drivers becoming gradually smaller. Tomorrow,
we’ll try to keep this same pace.”

“It’s the first time that the Citroën Junior Team is in the lead after a day of rallying,” pointed out Citroën
Junior Team manager Benoit Nogier. “Sébastien enjoyed a perfect day. He couldn’t have done better. He
pushed hard and consequently he’s first tonight. Kimi kept up the pace that he finished the Jordan Rally
with. He’s swapping times with the other drivers and constantly making progress. Both our drivers were
also very pleased with their cars. Now we need to continue like this tomorrow.”

Eight stages are on the schedule for the longest day of the Rally of Turkey tomorrow, totalling 145.82
competitive kilometres. By virtue of leading the event, Sébastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia will be first on
the road.