Rallying: Burns shows good form in Acropolis

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THE British driver Richard Burns is on course to win his second rally of the season after leading the Acropolis Rally in Delphi, Greece, at the end of the first stage. The former world champion Colin McRae is second, 2.4 seconds behind.

Burn took the lead when Belgium's Bruno Thiry was forced to retire. Thiry, who had been leading from the first special stage, pulled out when his Ford Escort suffered engine trouble on the fifth stage.

Earlier, the reigning champion Tommi Makinen, who leads the overall standings, retired after the first special stage after electrical problems.

Only three drivers were able to finish the second stage before it was suspended because the organisers deemed there were too many spectators on the route. At the end of the day, McRae had closed the gap, with Didier Auriol in third.