Frenchman Sebastien Loeb takes a 20-second lead into the second day of the Wales Rally GB but had a bigger advantage cut by officials.
Loeb has had plenty to celebrate in the world championship in 2005
The Citroen driver took the lead on stage two of six, with closest world title challenger Marcus Gronholm losing a minute due to brake problems.
But Loeb then got a 10-second penalty for arriving late for a time control.
Loeb, the current world champion and points leader, could retain his crown if results go his way this weekend.
Gronholm is over a minute behind the leader in his Peugeot and occupies fourth spot.
The Finn led after stage one but fell back to 19th as a result of his brake problems.
He won stages five and six to claw back some of the time lost.
Petter Solberg, chasing his fourth consecutive win in Wales, did not win a single stage on Friday but finds himself in second after staying with the pace of Loeb.
Another Finn, Harri Rovanpera, lies in third in his Mitsubishi.
Colin McRae's return to the world scene after an absence of almost two years ended with the Scotsman down in 13th.
The 1995 world champion Scotsman showed glimpses of his old self, but the lack of pace that has troubled Skoda all season remained.