Meeke leads Monte for Citroen

Despite spinning on the opening stage of the rally, Britain's Kris Meeke leads the Rally Monte Carlo overnight in his new-look PH Sport Citroen DS 3. Sebastien Ogier is currently 6.9 seconds behind and for the second year in succession, the World Champion has been outperformed by a Citroen on the first night of the Monte. Meeke's indiscretion cost him just fewer than 10s, but the Northern Irishman - who signed a three-year deal with Citroen in the off-season - went fastest on the second stage of the evening by 11s.

Ogier's VW team mate Andreas Mikkelsen holds third, ahead the new Hyundai i20 of Belgian Thierry Neuville, whose team mate Hayden Paddon - running the 2015-spec Hyundai i20, is fifth ahead of Mads Ostberg's M-Sport Fiesta.

VW's Jari-Matti Latvala had been running in the top three, but an incident with a rock or a bridge - Latvala wasn't sure which - forced him to back off and he ended up seventh, just in front of Robert Kubica who was struggling with a down-on-power BRC Ford Fiesta RS WRC.

In the closely fought WRC2 division, last year's Junior World Rally Championship winner Quentin Gilbert headed the pack in his Citroen DS 3 R5, while Welshman Elfyn Evans suffered a puncture on SS1 and dropped 1m17.8s. A strong performance from Evans pulled back the best part of 30s on the second stage and he ended the day 41.7s down and fourth overall, behind Julien Maurin and Armin Kremer.

Top Ten Positions after SS2:

Pos ..... Driver ..... Team ..... Car ..... Gap
1 Kris Meeke Abu Dhabi Total WRT Citroen 25m32.1s
2 Sebastien Ogier Volkswagen Motorsport Volkswagen 6.9s
3 Andreas Mikkelsen Volkswagen Motorsport II Volkswagen 20.0s
4 Thierry Neuville Hyundai Motorsport Hyundai 31.4s
5 Hayden Paddon Hyundai Motorsport N Hyundai 34.9s
6 Mads Ostberg M-Sport World Rally Team Ford 35.3s
7 Jari-Matti Latvala Volkswagen Motorsport Volkswagen 38.7s
8 Robert Kubica BRC Racing Team Ford 45.8s
9 Stephane Lefebvre Abu Dhabi Total WRT Citroen 48.6s
10 Dani Sordo Hyundai Motorsport Hyundai 51.8s

22nd January, 2016