M-Sport's Elfyn Evans was the rally leader at the conclusion of the first day of the 2015 Tour de Corse.
Torrential rain in Corsica resulted in the cancellation of the second stage but the third stage still proceeded after a significant delay.
In extremely wet conditions, Welshman Evans took advantage of previous joint-leader Sebastien Ogier, of Volkswagen, picking up a slow puncture to build an overnight 18.7seconds lead with an overall time of 46minutes and 48.5seconds.
Evans said: "It didn't feel great. I told Dan (Barritt, co-driver) I didn't think it's a great time and I didn't feel I was carrying great speed."
Hyundai's Kevin Abbring climbed from seventh place to second after the third stage, while another VW driver, Jari-Matti Latvala, finished third overall, 22.9seconds behind Evans.
"(It was a) difficult stage," said Latvala. "I took it really carefully. I didn't want to risk anything. It was very demanding."
Meanwhile, Peugeot Rally Academy driver Craig Breen leads WRC2 by 3.4 seconds over French driver Julien Maurin.