04 Feb 08
"Our winter testing programme included preparation for this highly specific event," said Citroen Sport's Technical Manager Xavier Mestelan-Pinon. "A long list of parameters has to be taken into account, such as the sub zero temperatures, the high average speeds, the presence of snow banks and the long reaction time between the moment the driver turns the wheel and the moment the car responds. This phenomenon is due to the narrow tyres we use and the small amount of rubber that is in contact with the ground.
"Without snow, it can be a particularly tough event for the dampers. When frozen dirt becomes exposed, the going gets much rougher and harder on the mechanicals. This year's regulations dictate just one type of studded tyre, the Pirelli Sottozero, whereas in previous years we were able to choose by how much the studs protruded from the tread blocks. That's an important factor and, like the other teams, we lack hindsight."
The line-up of Citroen entries in Sweden will also include a privately-entered C4 WRC for Urmo Aava/Kuldar Sikk and a Xsara WRC entered by Conrad Rautenbach/David Senior. These cars are prepared and run PH Sport with support from Citroen Sport technicians.