Kalle Rovanperä, who suffered a flat tire, dropped from third place to fourth in the opening race of the World Rally Championship, the Monte Carlo Rally.

- There was something at the beginning of the special exam, I don't know if it was loose or something else.

I didn't see it, Rovanperä said in an interview with the organizers.

Rovanperä lost almost a minute to Sebastien Ogier, who ran the bottom time in the first special stage of the morning.

The young Finnish driver now has a 53.5 second difference to third place, which was taken by Belgian Hyundai driver Thierry Neuville.

There are only three special stages left in the competition, so the prize is in danger of escaping from Rovanpera.

Ogier continues at the top of the rally with a 21-second gap to his Toyota teammate Elfyn Evans.

Neuville is 48.5 seconds away from second place.

Rovanpera and five other drivers were fined ten seconds on Sunday morning as they had deviated from the route on Friday in connection with special stages 4 and 7.

Other convicts were Neuville, Gus Greensmith, Pierre-Louis Loubet, Andreas Mikkelsen and Adrien Fourmaux.

The rally ends in the afternoon.