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Motorsport::Loeb keeps rivals at bay

Eight-time reigning champion Sebastien Loeb won five of yesterday's six stages to extend his lead on the second day of the World Rally Championship's season-opening event in Monte Carlo.

The French Citroen driver, who held a one minute four second advantage over Dani Sordo (Mini) overnight, moved 1min 37secs clear of the Spaniard. Sordo won the day's other stage.

Norway's Petter Solberg (Ford) remained in third three seconds further back.

The challenge of France's Sebastien Ogier in S2000 Skoda came to an end after crashing on the final stage.

As a result Loeb's team-mate, Finland's Mikko Hirvonen moved up to fourth with Russian driver Novikov Evgeny (M-Sport Ford) completing the top five.

Ireland's Craig Breen remains outside the chasing pack following day two of competition after staying in 15th position .

Irish Independent