Swedish driver P-G Andersson took his first Super 2000 World Rally Championship win of the year for PROTON on home territory, having been deprived of the class victory in Monte Carlo three weeks ago by a fire on the penultimate day.
There were no changes on the overall S2000 leaderboard during the final day of the rally, which took in six stages.
For Andersson, the final day was all about maintaining his comfortable advantage of more than three minutes over Irishman Craig Breen – the winner on the opening round.
“It’s a fantastic feeling to finally do it with PROTON,” said Andersson, who led Rally Sweden overall last year. “We had no real problems from start to finish, although we made a few set-up changes to get the best out of the car. Today we just looked after our advantage and concentrated on bringing our car safely to the finish.”
Breen, driving a Ford Fiesta S2000, had a much closer battle with Pontus Tidemand – Henning Solberg’s stepson – in an ex-Andreas Mikkelsen Skoda Fabia S2000, but the duo still ended up separated by more than a minute and a half at the finish, reinforcing Breen’s lead of the championship.
Reigning Production Car world champion Hayden Paddon, contesting his first event of the season, ended up a disappointed fourth with his Skoda Fabia – having aimed to try and take points off championship leader Breen.
“Unfortunately we got stuck in a snowbank earler and that compromised our rally,” Paddon said. “It’s not the result I wanted but at least we were there at the finish to score some points.”
Saudi Arabian driver Yazeed Al-Rhaji was sixth on his first snow rally: the only competitor to be driving a Ford Fiesta Regional Rally Car (RRC) on the event. He was followed home by Maciej Oleksowicz in a Fiesta S2000 and Alister McRae in the second PROTON.