Esapekka Lappi heads into Saturday with a 5.3 second lead over Sébastien Ogier following a very strong day of running on Rally México.
Friday’s final stage was a dash around the Distrito León Mx superspecial, a short 0.8 mile push to round off the day’s action.
This, like SS9’s Las Dunas superspecial, will feature at the end of tomorrow’s running albeit under a different name: Rock & Rally.
As expected with the short nature of this stage, there wasn’t much separating the drivers at the end, with 2.2s splitting the seven Rally1 cars.
Lappi’s stellar running on Friday didn’t end with a growth in the lead, as Ogier took 1.6s out of the Hyundai driver.
Elfyn Evans holds onto third going into Saturday, but Thierry Neuville has made strong gains on that advantage as the day has passed.
At the end of a difficult day spent running either first or second on the dusty roads, Kalle Rovanperä sits in fifth and 19.9s off Neuville.
Dani Sordo had a troubled afternoon featuring a puncture, but there was some consolation as he took the victory on SS10 by 0.5s.
Ibarrilla will kick off Saturday’s morning loop, where Lappi will look to keep this advantage intact on the second full day of Rally México.