Sebastien Ogier took a step towards another World Rally Championship title as rival Thierry Neuville encountered problems on day one of the season-ending Rally Australia.

Ogier, the champion in the past five seasons, lies seventh while Neuville is 10th after he lost time on the day's sixth stage.

Neuville suffered a puncture and bodywork damage after a heavy landing from a jump and then ran into a chicane.

It leaves the Belgian 33.7 seconds behind Ogier ahead of day two's action.

Citroen driver Mads Ostberg sits in the lead, finishing the day with a 6.8 second advantage over his Irish team-mate Craig Breen, with Toyota's Jari-Matti Latvala a further 1.9secs behind.

Breen was ninth overall in the standings coming into this weekend's rally.

Neuville's Hyundai team-mate Andreas Mikkelsen crashed in stage three after avoiding a tractor which was maintaining the course.

Mikkelsen slid into a ditch on a fast right-hand bend shortly after passing a tractor which had been pushing a straw bale back into place after Latvala's Toyota collided with the obstacle.