Pontus Tidemand remained firmly in control of WRC 2 at Rally Sweden on Saturday night after increasing his advantage on his home rally throughout the day.
The Skoda Fabia R5 driver stretched his 45.1sec lead to a comfortable 1min 16.2sec with just three more speed tests remaining on Sunday in this second round of the FIA World Rally Championship’s principal support category.
The Swede won all three morning special stages on snow and ice-covered roads near Hagfors, and added another two wins this afternoon. Only Ole Christian Veiby prevented Tidemand from completing a clean sweep of wins.
The battle behind was a much closer affair. Teemu Suninen (below), lying second, dropped 20sec in the opening test when the windscreen of his Ford Fiesta R5 misted up.
It allowed Veiby to move ahead in another Fabia R5, but he stayed there for only one more stage before the Finn regained the place. They were separated by just 5.3sec at the end of the day.
Eric Camilli retained fourth in a Fiesta R5, with Gus Greensmith fifth in a similar car. The Briton conceded position to Emil Bergqvist after receiving a 30sec penalty for checking in late to a control, but he regained the place in the penultimate test and they are split by 3.6sec.
Eyvind Brynildsen dropped almost five minutes after puncturing in the opening stage, while Alexey Lukyanuk’s troubled event continued when the Russian retired his Fiesta R5 for a second day in the penultimate test.
Head to WRC+ to see the latest onboard and video reports from Rally Sweden.