Kris Meeke drops out of contention at Rally Argentina after crashing on stage four

Kris Meeke
Meeke earned a dramatic win in Mexico but has exited from this year's other three WRC events

Kris Meeke's hopes of contending at Rally Argentina are over after he suffered a crash while in second place.

The Northern Irishman won Rally Mexico in dramatic circumstances last month but has exited from this season's other four World Rally Championship rounds.

The 37-year-old's mishap on stage four saw him lost almost seven minutes as he dropped to 15th and he was later forced out of Friday's remaining stages.

Meeke's windscreen was broken as the car sustained extensive damage.

He managed to limp to the finish of stage four but following an assessment of the car, he pulled out of the rest of Friday's action.

Citroen are hoping that Meeke and his Irish team-mate Craig Breen, forced out by a broken gearbox on Friday, will be able to compete again on Saturday but their hopes of high finishes are over.

"I got completely caught by surprise. A bump in the road just launched the car," Meeke told the WRC website.

"It's difficult to drive but let's see if we can get it back."

Meeke survived astonishing late drama in Mexico in March to clinch his fourth win in a World Rally Championship event.

Leading by 37.2 seconds heading into the last stage in Mexico, the Briton slid into a car park with under one kilometre left after hitting a bump.

The Citroen driver had to weave his way around parked cars before he managed to get back to the road as he eventually won by 13.8 seconds from Sebastien Ogier.

After four stages in Argentina, Meeke's fellow Briton Elfyn Evans, driving a Ford, was 23.6 seconds ahead of Finland's Jari-Matti Latvala with Norway's Mads Ostberg a further 8.6 seconds back in third.

World Championship leader Ogier won Thursday's opening special stage but dropped to fifth spot, 35.7 seconds behind Evans, after suffering mechanical problems on Friday.

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