Dramatic Monte starts with highs and lows for Hyundai
- 19th January 2017, 11:44pm
Hyundai have suffered the highs and lows of the World Rally Championship on the opening stage of the 2017 season at the Monte Carlo Rally.
Driving the all-new 2017 car, last year’s title runner-up, Thierry Neuville, won the opening two stages of the event, held in darkness, upstaging new M-Sport recruit and four-time champion Sebastien Ogier.
But New Zealander Hayden Paddon crashed his Hyundai near the end of the first stage of the event, hitting an embankment and rolling the car on to its side.
In footage streamed on WRC+, a spectator appeared to fall from the bank during the accident and was injured, after which the stage was cancelled.
Neuville won both the opening stages from Ogier, who took a cautious approach, while Finn Juho Hanninen gave the new Toyota Yaris and brilliant start by clocking the third fastest time on SS2, 13 seconds faster than his team-mate, Jari-Matti Latvala.
Because of the cancellation of stage one, overall times after SS2 are still not yet available. More to follow.
- Peter Whitten
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