Ford's Petter Solberg set the best time today in the qualifying stage ahead of this weekend's Rally Mexico, the third round in the 2012 FIA World Rally Championship.

Solberg completed the 5.18 km La Laborcita test in 2 minutes 48.673 seconds, 0.9 seconds up on Mikko Hirvonen, who was 'best of the rest' for Citroen. Petter will now get first pick of start position for tomorrow's opening leg.

"I was really trying hard not to make any mistakes this morning," said the columnist. "That was good fun."

Sebastien Loeb meanwhile, who was quickest in the shakedown, came in third, ahead of Jari-Matti Latvala, Evgeny Novikov and Mads Ostberg.

"It was okay," Loeb noted. "No risks or mistakes. In one or two corners it was sliding too much. We will see what we can do tomorrow."

"I don't know what happened," Latvala added, "I thought I drove well."

Further back, Thierry Neuville was seventh, followed by Ott Tanak, Nasser Al-Attiyah and WRC returnee, Chris Atkinson, who rounded out the top ten: "We will get the hang of it over the weekend," said the Aussie. "We are learning all the time."

Rally Mexico now continues this evening, with SS1, the short 1.05 km Guanajuato SSS, kicking off proceedings at 20.09 hours local time. The action begins 'proper' on Friday.



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