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Last Updated: Saturday, 22 January, 2005, 18:18 GMT
Loeb maintains Monte Carlo lead
Sebastien Loeb
World champion Sebastien Loed held onto his lead at the end of day two of the season-opening Monte Carlo Rally.

The Frenchman, who is bidding for a hat-trick of wins in the principality, leads closest rival Marcus Gronholm by almost two minutes.

But Loeb's Citroen team-mate Francois Duval crashed into an electricity pylon on stage six.

His co-driver Stephane Prevot had to be airlifted to hospital after injuring his legs.

A Citroen spokesman said: "Francois smashed into the pylon on Stephane's side of the car. He seems fine but Stephane was complaining about his legs."

Duval, who had been just 32 seconds behind Loeb in the standings, said the accident had happened when he lost the front end of his car under braking.

He said: "It wasn't possible to turn the car, and I hit the telegraph pole on the outside of the corner.

"It was a shame because, for sure, I was having a good battle with Sebastien, and this was bad luck."

Loeb was forced to stop as the pylon fell onto the course, and the stage had to be cancelled.

There was another accident on stage seven in which Skoda driver Armin Schwarz had to be airlifted after damaging his shoulder.


Leading positions after the second day of the Monte Carlo Rally:
1. Sebastien Loeb (France) Citroen 2:50:34.8
2. Marcus Gronholm (Finland) Peugeot 1 min 54.7 secs behind
3. Toni Gardemeister (Finland) Ford 2:08.3
4. Petter Solberg (Norway) Subaru 2:17.5
5. Gilles Panizzi (France) Mitsubishi 2:45.1
6. Markko Martin (Estonia) Peugeot 3:44.3
7. Roman Kresta (Czech Republic) Ford 4:24.1
8. Alexandre Bengue (France) Skoda 4:58.1
9. Harri Rovanpera (Finland) Mitsubishi 6:10.2
10. Manfred Stohl (Austria) Citroen 7:13.7




WORLD RALLY 2005


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SEE ALSO
Champion Loeb holds Monaco lead
21 Jan 05 |  Rallying



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