The opening day of the French round of the FIA World Rally Championship in Corsica had a surprise leader in Britain’s Elfyn Evans at the wheel of a Ford Fiesta.
Northern Ireland’s Kris Meeke is down in seventh place overall in his works Citroen DS3, some 35 seconds adrift of the leader.
Only three special stages were held on day one and the second stage had to be cancelled, with torrential rain earlier causing the problem.
On special stage one and three Meeke recorded the eighth fastest time while on the rally opener it was former F1 driver Robert Kubica who topped the table in his Ford Fiesta.
The 2015 World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier was back in tenth place in his works Volkswagen Polo.
The reason for his lowly placing was that he picked up a puncture on the final special stage of the day.
Kubica, who had set the opening pace, fell back due to the very wet and slippery conditions.
Meanwhile, the World Motor Sport Council has approved a 2016 World Rally Championship calendar containing 14 rallies.
Monte Carlo and France are also subject to terms being finalised between event promoters, WRC Promoter and the FIA before November 30.
However, the World Rally Championship manufacturers remain opposed to the schedule growing from this year’s 13 rallies to 14.