Andreas Mikkelsen closes on Rally Azores win

Andreas Mikkelsen looks assured of victory in the 2012 Intercontinental Rally Challenge's Azores opener, as a clean sweep of stage wins on the event's penultimate loop stretched his advantage.

Skoda UK driver Mikkelsen is now 24 seconds clear of works Skoda man Juho Hanninen, his predecessor as IRC champion, with just two stages to go this afternoon.

Bryan Bouffier (PH Peugeot) continues to cruise towards third place, while Sepp Wiegand (Skoda Deutschland) is back ahead of Hermann Gassner Jr (Red Bull Skoda) in their battle for fourth.

Andreas Mikkelsen Sata Rallye Azores 2012 Gallery

Leading positions after SS12:

Pos Driver Team/Car Time/Gap
1. Andreas Mikkelsen Skoda UK 1h40m10.2s
2. Juho Hanninen Skoda + 24.0s
3. Bryan Bouffier Peugeot + 1m49.7s
4. Sepp Wiegand Skoda Deutschland + 4m28.3s
5. Hermann Gassner Jr Red Bull Skoda + 4m38.0s
6. Ricardo Moura Mitsubishi + 6m29.5s
7. Oleksandr Salyuk Iurii Chemezov Ford + 8m25.4s
8. Sergio Silva Subaru + 12m09.9s
9. Ruben Rodrigues Mitsubishi + 13m46.4s
10. Miguel Barbosa Mitsubishi + 14m28.7s

Source: Autosport