Northern Ireland's Kris Meeke wins Rally of Argentina
Last Updated: 26/04/15 8:22pm
Northern Ireland's Kris Meeke ended Volkswagen's monopoly of the World Rally Championship as the Citroen driver recorded his maiden WRC victory in the Rally of Argentina.
Meeke, aided by Irish co-driver Paul Nagle, led home a Citroen one-two as Norwegian team-mate Mads Ostberg took second spot to give the team their first win since Sebastien Loeb won this race two years ago.
It ended the run of five successive wins for Loeb's compatriot and two-time defending world champion Sebastien Ogier and seven for Volkswagen.
Ogier, who won the first three legs of the championship, was never in the hunt after his Volkswagen Polo broke down on Friday and he returned to the fray on Saturday with the handicap of a 35-minute penalty.
Welshman Elfyn Evans took third place in his Ford Fiesta after overnight third-placed driver Jari-Matti Latvala's Volkswagen suffered a breakdown on Sunday morning.
Meeke was claiming the first British WRC win since the late Colin McRae was victorious in Kenya 13 years ago and the 35-year-old from Dungannon paid tribute to his mentor.
"The one guy who did most for me isn't here to see this," Meeke said. "This is for Colin. He helped my career out at the very beginning. He supported me financially through to the world championship. Without his support I wouldn't be here."
Leading final positions:
1 K Meeke (NIrl) Citroen 3:41:44.9
2 M Ostberg (Nor) Citroen +18.1
3 E Evans (Wal) Ford +3:27.4
4 M Prokop (Cze) Ford +6:26.1
5 D Sordo (Esp) Hyundai +10:46.7
6 K Al Qassimi (UAE) Ford +11:19.9
7 A Al-Kuwari (Qat) Mini +16:02.6
8 D Dominguez (Par) Ford +18:48.2
9 G Saba (Par) Skoda +21:20.6
10 F Villagra (Arg) Ford +25:19.6