VILLA CARLOS PAZ, ARGENTINA - MAY 01: Sebastien Ogier of France and Julien Ingrassia of France compete in their Volkswagen Motorsport Volkswagen Polo R WRC during the Shakedown of the WRC Argentina on may 01 , 2013 in Villa Carlos Paz, Argentina. (Photo by Massimo Bettiol/Getty Images)

World championship leader Sebastien Ogier, driving a Volkswagen Polo, held on to his overall advantage in the Rally of Argentina

after Thursday's second day despite testing wet and foggy conditions.

Ogier, who claimed his third win of the season in the Rally of Portugal last time out, picked up where he left off on Wednesday evening.

The French driver, who has also captured the Sweden and Mexico races, leads Citroen's nine-time world champion Sebastien Loeb by 16 seconds.

Mikko Hirvonen, in the second factory Citroen, was back in third place, 18 seconds off the pace.


With drizzle and visibility down to 50 metres at the finish, Ogier was happy to have taken four of the day's five stages. However, he was mystified by the damage caused to his left tyre.

“I didn't hit anything, maybe in a watersplash or something. This stage was a bit dry for soft tyres, but over the loop it wasn't a bad choice. I'm happy but tired,” said Ogier.

Earlier, Hirvonen's stablemate Dani Sordo lost several minutes when he rolled his car, with it ending on its roof needing to be righted with the help of spectators.

But he ran into controversy as he re-started just in front of Ogier, who later accused him of slowing him down over several kilometres.

Loeb, racing a reduced programme this year, is bidding to maintain his extraordinary record in the event, having won every edition of this South American leg of the championship since 2005. -Sapa-AFP