GRONHOLM AND SOLBERG GO HEAD TO HEAD The second leg of the Rally Sweden has been as breathtaking as the first, with an extraordinary battle between Peugeot's Marcus Gronholm and Subaru driver Petter Solberg. The pair traded tenths of a...
GRONHOLM AND SOLBERG GO HEAD TO HEAD
The second leg of the Rally Sweden has been as breathtaking as the first, with an extraordinary battle between Peugeot's Marcus Gronholm and Subaru driver Petter Solberg. The pair traded tenths of a second and the lead all day, in a thrilling spectacle that captivated spectators. Marcus ends the leg in second place, after his rival pulled out a 12-second advantage on stages where he felt comfortable in the afternoon. Peugeot's Markko Martin concentrated on refining the set-up of his 307 WRC and was able to set some promising times, despite being delayed by a gearbox casing which broke over one of the many bumps. The third 307 WRC of local hero Daniel Carlsson is climbing back up the leaderboard after losing minutes with broken suspension on day one. The Swede hopes to reach sixth overall before the end of his home rally tomorrow.
Marcus Gronholm: "It's been a very exciting day, with a fantastic fight on every stage. Petter went quicker than me on the final loop of stages, but I'm really not worried: everything is still possible tomorrow. The car and the team have been fantastic: I've not had any problems all day. I've enjoyed myself a lot and I hope all the spectators have as well. I think tomorrow will be just as exciting and I'm really looking forward to another big battle. Everything is too close to predict!"
Markko Martin: "I broke the gearbox casing over a crest at the very end of SS10. I had to complete the next stage with a big oil leak and the warning light on all the way. Luckily I was able to get to the end of the stage and reach service at Hagfors. Apart from that problem today was very good, and I am pleased to be heading to parc ferme in fourth place. I've learnt a lot on this rally: both about the differential settings on the Peugeot 307 WRC and my new Pirelli tyres."
Daniel Carlsson: "I was running second on the road today which was a big handicap on the opening pair of stages as I had to sweep clean the thin layer of snow which covered the ice on the roads. I changed my differential settings before the next loop of stages, which was the right decision as I felt a lot more confident of the handling. On SS13 I was able to set an excellent fourth fastest time, despite losing fourth gear. I'm quite confident for the final leg tomorrow, where my aim will be to jump from my ninth place tonight to sixth at the finish. The gaps are quite small, so I hope this can be possible."
Corrado Provera: "Today has been one of the most spell-binding days in the history of rallying. Petter Solberg has come out of it with a useful handful of seconds heading into the final leg. Marcus knows that the constructors championship is as important for Peugeot as the drivers championship is for himself, so he has not been taking too many risks. Nonetheless, he will be trying his best to seal a fourth Swedish victory. Thanks to Markko's fourth place, Peugeot could come away from Sweden with an extremely good points haul if everything goes to plan."