The Citroen Racing Team had all three of their cars in the top ten of the overall classification at the end of day one of Rally Sweden.
Kris Meeke was mixing it up with the leaders during the day and ended the action in fourth place overall just behind Hyundai’s Thierry Neuville, Toyota’s Jari Matti Latvala and M-Sport’s Ott Tanak.
The Northern Irishman commented on the opening day of action by saying:
After a good morning, I lost time in the afternoon. On SS5, I dropped about fifteen seconds stuck in a snow bank. The car hit a bump, we ran wide on the next corner and were lucky not to lose more. On the final stage, I had no grip. My tyres were completely shot, they had lost most of their studs. But we’re still in contention for a place on the podium, so I still feel positive.
Craig Breen recovered from a spin early on and heads into the weekend action in eighth place overall in his first competitive outing in the C3 WRC ans speaking following the days activity he commented by saying:
It hasn’t really been our day today! I made a series of mistakes, I damaged certain parts of the bodywork and I lost some of the aero package. It’s incredible what a difference the aerodynamics of the C3 WRC make. Despite all that, we’re still in the race, less than a minute off sixth place.
Stephane Lefebvre ended the day in 10th place overall in the old DS3 and speaking following the session he commented by saying:
It’s been a good day, I think I’ve made quite a lot of progress on this surface. This morning, maybe I was driving a bit too much in the middle of the road, not daring to use the little snow banks on the side of the road. I enjoyed myself a bit more on the second pass. I would like to push more to close the gap to the guys ahead, but the risk with that is you end up being less effective. You have to find the right balance, but I think we’re heading in the right direction.
Citroen Racing Team Principal Yves Matton commented by saying:
I think we can be pleased that all three of our cars are in the top 10 tonight. The pace was frantic out there, with a few mistakes being made by many of the crews but we remain well-placed to secure a good result in Sweden. Kris is fighting for a place on the podium and I think Craig has the potential to move up a place or two by being more consistent. Stéphane also had a good day, considering his limited experience here.