Rally Croatia - 1st Day - 2nd Loop: Rovanpera masterclass distances rivals in foggy Croatia

At the end of the second loop of the first day, Kalle Rovanpera is still the leader driver of Rally Croatia with Thierry Neuville and Ott Tanak fighting each other for the second position.

Kalle Rovanpera is still in first position overall and extended his advantage over his rivals as he was the fastest driver in Stage 5, 6 and 7.

Thierry Neuville claimed back his second position at the end of Stage 7. More specifically, he dropped to fourth position before the start of the afternoon loop as he checked 4 minutes late into the time control resulting in receiving 40-second time penalty. This delay was due to the fact that his i20N had an alternator issue and he and his co-driver, Martijn Wydaeghe, had to push their car for 800 meters on the road section with the intention of going back to the Service Park. However, took back his second place from Ott Tanak at the end of Stage 5, but he dropped to third position at the end of Stage 6 after having no visibility into that stage as the windscreen of his i20N was fogging up. Finally, he was the fastest driver in Stage 8 and this stage win was the first one for Hyundai in this event.

Ott Tanak dropped to third position overall at the end of Stage 7 as he lost 20,2 seconds in that stage. He was second before the start of Stage 5 due to the time penalty of his teammate, but he stole the second place at the end of Stage 6.

Craig Breen remains fourth and stayed out of trouble throughout the second loop of Friday.

Oliver Solberg completes the top five and reported a problem with the gear changing at the end of Stage 5. In addition to that, he stopped briefly around 6 Km into Stage 6 resulting in damaging the front end of his i20N.

Elfyn Evans climbed into sixth from eighth position at the end of Day1 in Croatia and it is a day that he wants to forget as he mentioned at the end of Stage 8.

Takamoto Katsuta is seventh and kept his position after the end of Stage 8 despite the fact that the front left tyre was off the rim during the last stage of the first day at Rally Croatia.

Gus Greensmith dropped to eighth from fifth position at the end of Stage 5 as he lost more than one minute in that stage due to a front right puncture and to a front left wheel rim damage. Moreover, he ran wide on a muggy right hander and rode up a grass banking in Stage 6 while he suffered from another two punctures in Stage 8. The front left tyre was entirely off the rim and the rear left was looking soft, but it is still to be confirmed if he is able to return back to the Service Park.

Watch below the stage times:

Watch the overall classification after SS8:

Photo Credits: Toyota

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