Loeb thrives on asphalt in Spain

Loeb thrives on asphalt in Spain
By AutoSport

11/11/2012 at 03:33Updated 11/11/2012 at 03:35

Sebastien Loeb stormed away from the field on the second afternoon of the Rally of Spain.

The world champion extended his advantage over nearest pursuer Jari-Matti Latvala from 18.9 to 27 through Saturday's second loop.

Ford driver Latvala had tried his utmost to stay in touch with Loeb's Citroen, but had to concede defeat and admit that the Frenchman - in his last event as a full-time World Rally driver - was still a class apart on asphalt.

Overnight leader Mads Ostberg went into freefall during the afternoon.

Initially suspecting set-up issues, Ostberg eventually wondered if something was broken on his Adapta Ford given its lack of pace and "horrible" handling. He has now dropped back behind Mikko Hirvonen and Ott Tanak to fifth.

Tanak has shown increasingly impressive speed during leg two and is only 14s behind third-placed Hirvonen with one day to go.

Dani Sordo was the overall pacesetter during the afternoon once morning electrical issues on his Mini had been resolved at service.

The Spaniard is running under Rally 2 following his Friday crash however, meaning his string of stage wins will only get him to the cusp of the top 20.