At the end of the four races held on Friday morning in central Greece, Frenchman Pierre-Louis Loubet (Ford M-Sport) is ahead in the general classification of his rival Sébastien Loeb (Ford), nine-time world champion, and Finn Esapekka Lappi (Toyota ).
The leader until the start of the morning special session, Loeb, who returned to the WRC for fourth place this season, made a mistake in this SS5, losing precious seconds in the standings. On this same SS5, Loubet, son of the activist Yves Loubet, set his first ever time (best time) in a WRC special. He now leads the race by 1.9 seconds ahead of Loeb.
Rovanpera stay behind
Rovanperä, in his Toyota, is in 9th place, more than 30 seconds from the leader, due to his position as the opener, and therefore the main sweep, on dirt tracks where his grip was not as good as that of his rivals, who they left. after him. “Being first on the road here is not easy. The level of grip is very low,” explained Rovanperä at the end of the first special session of the day.
The Finn has a new match point this weekend to become, at the age of 21, the youngest world champion in WRC history. He currently leads the championship with a comfortable lead over his main rivals: 72 points over Estonia’s Ott Tänak, in 5th place on Friday at noon, and 87 over his Toyota teammate, Briton Elfyn Evans, 7th.
Two stages were still to be contested on Friday afternoon (SS6, SS7) to finish this first day of the meeting.