Drama on the first full day of Rally Sweden, round two of the FIA World Rally Championship and just when it looked as if the reigning World Rally Champion Sebastien Ogier would top the charts he slid off into a snow bank in his works VW Polo.
Jari Matti-Latvala had been challenging the Frenchman in another works VW Polo but he too went off as the third member of the VW team Andreas Mikkelsen inherited the lead.
The Ogier incident dropped him to fourth place overall and it is Belgian Thierry Neuville who will start on Saturday in second place with Mads Ostberg (Citroen) in third.
Kris Meeke will want to forget the opening day.He is down in 12th position overall as on stage seven he went into a snow bank and the Citroen works driver lost three minutes.It is going to prove extremely difficult for him to get back in touch with the leaders.
On Sunday the challenge continues with the longest section of the rally comprising eight stages.