05 Feb 08
The main service park, previously in Hagfors, has been relocated to Karlstad to form a rally village with the headquarters and the Superspecial stage, using the city's trotting track and ice hockey arena.
Just six of the 20 stages follow same format as 2007, although most of the others are familiar from previous years. The action begins on Thursday 7 February with the 1.9km Superspecial stage at the trotting track, before Friday's opening day visits the western part of the Varmland region for the first time since 2001.
Saturday and Sunday's tests are clustered around Hagfors with all the more northerly stages missing from this year's itinerary. All three days include a remote service midway through. The town on Sunne hosts Friday's break with Hagfors the location for Saturday and Sunday. Drivers face 20 stages in total, with all 10 venues used twice, covering 340.24km in a total route of 1440.08km.
In addition to the top level WRC contest, the Swedish Rally is the first of eight rounds that qualify for the 2008 FIA production Car World Rally Championship (P-WRC). This year, for the first time, all the 28 available places have been taken up. Nineteen contenders have elected to start their campaigns in Sweden, including the two most recent champions; Toshi Arai (2007) and Nasser Al Attiyah (2006).