WRC: Mikkelsen leads Rally Sweden

WRC: Mikkelsen leads Rally Sweden

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WRC: Mikkelsen leads Rally Sweden

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Volkswagen driver Andreas Mikkelsen set the fastest time on the opening special stage to take an early lead on Rally Sweden.The Norwegian (LEFT) completed the 1.9km Karlstadt Super Special 0.8 second quicker than his reigning world champion teammate Sebastian Ogier, who lost time by picking the wrong line in the early part of the test.

Ogier was a further 1.4sec quicker than World Rally returnee Ott Tanak (Ford Fiesta RS). The Estonian, starting his first event since the 2012 Rally of Spain, prevented Jari-Matti Latvala making a VW clean sweep of the top three by just 0.2sec.

M-Sport Fiesta driver Mikko Hirvonen was fifth fastest, while fellow Fiesta driver Henning Solberg, starting his first WRC event since last year’s Rally Sweden, rounded out the top six.

Hyundai drivers Juho Hanninen and Thierry Neuville sandwiched Citroen’s Mads Ostberg, who finished the stage eighth quickest in his DS3. Ostberg’s Citroen teammate Kris Meeke, who went off during yesterday’s shakedown stage, completed the top 10.

Norwegian Anders Grondal was the star of WRC2, running first on the road in his Group N Subaru and leading the way until the faster WRC cars came through. He wound up 13th overall, 0.2sec clear of Jari Ketomaa’s Fiesta and just two tenths adrift of ex-F1 star Robert Kubica’s M-Sport Fiesta.

Leading positions after SS1:

Pos  Driver              Team/Car      Time/Gap
 1.  Andreas Mikkelsen   VW             1m33.4s
 2.  Sebastien Ogier     VW               +0.8s
 3.  Ott Tanak           M-Sport Ford     +2.2s
 4.  Jari-Matti Latvala  VW               +2.4s
 5.  Mikko Hirvonen      Citroen          +2.6s
 6.  Henning Solberg     Solberg Ford     +3.0s
 7.  Juho Hanninen       Hyundai          +3.2s
 8.  Mads Ostberg        Citroen          +3.2s
 9.  Thierry Neuville    Hyundai          +3.4s
10.  Kris Meeke          Citroen          +3.9s

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