Volkswagen's Sebastien Ogier has decided to start as far down the order as possible on the opening day of Rally Sweden.

Ogier got first pick of position after setting the best time this morning in the qualifying stage. The Frenchman opted to start 17th, the lowest position possible of the priority seeded drivers, so as to try and avoid the loose snow, which could handicap the early runners.

"I think the best tactic is to start a long way back - and in any case 17 is my favourite number!" Ogier told the official WRC site.

Mads Ostberg, who was second in qualifying, then followed suit and opted for 16th, with Mikko Hirvonen going for 15th. In the end the starting order was the reverse of where the drivers' qualified, with Jarkko Nikara having to run first, after he crashed in qualifying and failed to set a time.

Rally Sweden now continues with the short Karlstad super special, which will start at 20.04 hours local time [19.04 hours UK time]. The action then gets underway 'proper' on Friday, with SS2, Lesjofors 1, due to start at 08.39 hours local time [07.39 hours UK time]. Friday's action includes two loops of three stages, before a second and final run through the Karlstad SSS.

Rally Sweden: Day 1 running order:

1. Jarkko NikaraProdrive WRC Team MINI John Cooper Works WRC
2. Michal KosciouskoLotos Team WRC MINI John Cooper Works WRC T
3. Matthew WilsonQatar WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC
4. Khalid Al-QassimiAbu Dhabi Citroen Total WRT DS3 WRC T
5. Henning SolbergFord Fiesta RS WRC
6. Jari KetomaaFord Fiesta RS WRC
7. Martin Prokop Jipocar Czech National TeamFord Fiesta RS WRC T
8. Dani SordoAbu Dhabi Citroen Total WRT DS3 WRC
9. Evgeny NovikovQatar M-Sport WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC M
10. Sebastien LoebCitroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT DS3 WRC M
11. Thierry Neuville Qatar WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRCT
12. Jari-Matti LatvalaVolkswagen Motorsport Polo R WRCM
13. Juho Hanninen Qatar WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC
14. Pontus TidemandFord Fiesta WRC
15. Mikko HirvonenCitroen Total Abu Dhabi WRT DS3 WRC M
16. Mads OstbergQatar M-Sport WRT Ford Fiesta RS WRC M
17. Sebastien OgierVolkswagen Motorsport Polo R WRC M

 

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