Thierry Neuville (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) after the end of the second day in rally Sweden in the lead. The Belgian took over after the 3rd klassementsrit the leadership of Ott Tänak (Toyota Yaris WRC). Andreas Mikkelsen (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) follows as a second to 4.9 seconds of his Belgian team-mate. Hayden Paddon (Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC) provides a full Hyundai stage. The Kiwi follows as the third at 12.1 sec from Neuville.
The rally Sweden is so far a very bizarre rally. The riders who are first on the track must have been heavily disadvantaged and must restrict themselves to the clean up of the fresh snow. After about five cars, there is a more or less passable route.
It is therefore not surprising that Thierry Neuville, who, as 5th on the track had the lead. Although, the more riders on the trail going the faster it is. In that respect, one can speak of a strong performance from the Belgian who Friday one klassementsrit won. “I do my best, but it is not easy. The riders who are after me on the track need to sit me on the skin. I try to drive fast without taking risks.”
Andreas Mikkelsen started as 8th. He was very regular but had to for the time being, several recognise in team-mate Thierry Neuville. Hayden Paddon will kick his world cup season in Sweden. The New Zealander, as 10th on the track, won the last klassementsrit of the day and wipte over Craig Breen (Citroen C3 WRC), winner of two klassementsritten Friday afternoon, to the 3rd place. Breen end the day 4th.
The fresh snow made Friday for a lot of frustrations for the riders who are first on to the track had. Ott Tänak (Toyota Yaris WRC) started the day as leader. The Est won the 1st ride Friday morning but fell afterwards away completely. The Est state after eight klassementsritten on the 9th place at 1 min 29 secs of leader Neuville. “This was a very difficult day, but I have to me it down. There are even contests.”
Sébastien Ogier (Ford Fiesta WRC), is not even in the top 10 and hit each klassementsrit more and more frustrated. The French world champion is diminished to the 12th position and looks at a lag of 2 min, 48.8 sec. “The conditions this afternoon were worse than the morning. More than this I could not do. This is one big joke. Here I am punished for my good start of the season. I have no idea about the stand. I discover that tonight. Tomorrow awaits me, perhaps, more of the same,” said Ogier.
Kevin Abbring and Peter Chun (Ford Fiesta R5) will be on the 18th place.
It is looking forward to the weather conditions and the starting positions of the riders on Saturday. There will be eight stages ridden. The rally Sweden ends Sunday afternoon.