Thierry Neuville has set the fastest time on the shakedown course ahead of Rally Sweden with defending World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier in third place on the timesheet.

The Hyundai Motorsport driver was forced into catch-up after a disastrous opening two stages at the 2018 WRC opener Rallye Monte-Carlo last month to eventually finish a distant fifth place as Ogier stormed to victory.

Looking to make amends in Sweden, Neuville has topped the shakedown at the snow event with conditions set to stay cold and thick with snow throughout the weekend.

Neuville edged Citroen’s Mads Ostberg by 0.3 seconds on the shakedown, with the Norwegian driver missing from the 2018 WRC opening round, as Rallye Monte-Carlo winner Ogier claimed third place for M-Sport Ford.

Kris Meeke has followed up his fourth place from last month’s WRC opener with fourth place in the shakedown for Citroen ahead of Rallye Monte-Carlo runner-up Ott Tanak for Toyota.

Hyundai’s Andreas Mikkelsen, who dropped out of the season opener last month, claimed sixth place ahead of 2017 Rally Sweden winner Jari-Matti Latvala down in sixth for Toyota. Craig Breen has claimed eighth place for Citroen ahead of M-Sport Ford’s Teemu Suninen who gets his 2018 WRC campaign underway in Sweden with teammate Elfyn Evans rounding out the top ten.

With Esapekka Lappi (Toyota) 11th and Hayden Paddon (Hyundai) 12th, local Swedish star Mattias Adielsson leads the WRC2 times for Skoda ahead of Ford’s Kevin Abbring and Skoda’s Pontus Tidemand.

Rally Sweden gets underway on Thursday night with the opening 1.9km Karlstad 1 stage.

Full Rally Sweden shakedown results here