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Solberg Leads Tight Battle at Royal Rally of Scandinavia


VÄRMLAND, Sweden — As the Bauhaus Royal Rally of Scandinavia enters its final day, Oliver Solberg holds a narrow lead over Hayden Paddon after a grueling series of stages that tested drivers to their limits. Solberg, driving with precision and determination, finished SS9 with a time of 41 minutes and 21.9 seconds, just 3.3 seconds ahead of Paddon.

The day was marked by intense competition and challenging conditions, with loose gravel and numerous rocks making it difficult for drivers to maintain control. Solberg managed to extend his lead slightly, despite not being entirely satisfied with his performance. “The times are so close anyway, every gap is important. It was so loose and so many rocks, it is not easy. The feeling today wasn’t okay, I can’t say I’m impressed with our day but hopefully we can have a bit of a push tomorrow,” Solberg remarked.

Paddon, who has been putting relentless pressure on Solberg throughout the day, remains optimistic about his chances. “As Heikkilä would say, every stage is like a qualifying stage. It is crazy to think we’re fighting for tenths of seconds on every stage. We tried to push on this one but every time we tried we lost the rear of the car. Tomorrow is more suited to us so let’s see what we can do tomorrow,” Paddon said.

Mikko Heikkilä of Finland, currently in third place, trails Solberg by 12.7 seconds. He faced a tough challenge from France’s Mathieu Franceschi, who is only 4.2 seconds behind. Heikkilä commented on the day’s proceedings, stating, “This is all a qualifying stage, I was not expecting it like this! This stage was really, really nice, we were not fast but I enjoyed it.”

Latvia’s Mārtiņš Sesks moved into fifth place after overtaking Frank Tore Larsen, who now sits in sixth. Sesks reflected on the day’s ups and downs, saying, “I can sleep two more minutes tomorrow? I saw [Mabellini] say the same! We start the day third, down to fifth, but that is racing. We learn from the mistakes today and keep going.”

Among the notable performances of the day was Eyvind Brynildsen, who overcame damper and wheel issues to remain in the top 10. “It was really tough, we had some kind of damper issue on the rear left and then wheel damage on the last stage. It’s stretching a bit to the top five guys and my aim this week was to make the top five,” Brynildsen shared.

As the rally enters its final day, the drivers will face their last and perhaps toughest stages yet. With such a close competition at the top, every second will count, and the pressure will be immense.

Stay tuned for all the latest updates and results from the final stages of the Bauhaus Royal Rally of Scandinavia, as drivers give their all in a bid for victory.

Current Standings after SS9:

  1. O. Solberg (SWE) – 41min 21.9sec
  2. H. Paddon (NZL) +3.3sec
  3. M. Heikkilä (FIN) +12.7sec
  4. M. Franceschi (FRA) +16.9sec
  5. M. Sesks (LAT) +20.0sec
  6. F. T. Larsen (NOR) +21.7sec

Tomorrow’s Preview

The final day of the Bauhaus Royal Rally of Scandinavia promises to be thrilling, with Solberg and Paddon locked in a tight battle for the lead. Expect fierce competition as drivers push for podium positions and crucial championship points.

Follow us for live updates and detailed coverage of the final stages!