Hagfors, Sweden - Sebastien Ogier held the lead at the end of Thursday's action in the Rally of Sweden, the second leg of the 2014 World Rally Championship.
Volkswagen works driver Ogier, the defending world champion and winner in Sweden in 2013, led two fellow Volkswagen drivers - Andreas Mikkelsen, trailing by a margin of 5.8 seconds, and Jari-Matti Latvala, 12.2 seconds off the pace - after a day that featured six special stages covering more than 60km on icy roads and saw the drivers cross the border into Norway and back.
SIX OUT OF SEVEN FOR VW
Ogier and Mikkelsen have won six of the seven special stages between them since the start of the event on Wednesday evening, with Estonia's Ott Tanak winning special stage five.
“I didn't expect to finish the day in first place after being first on the road this morning,” admitted Ogier.
Friday will feature nine more special stages with almost 120 kilometres timed.
1 Sebastien Ogier (France) Volkswagen Polo-R - 39min56.5
2 Andreas Mikkelsen (Norway) Volkswagen Polo-R +5.8sec
3 Jari-Matti Latvala (Finland) Volkswagen Polo-R +12.2
4 Ott Tanak (Estonia) Ford Fiesta RS +14.8
5 Mikko Hirvonen (Finland) Ford Fiesta RS +22.5
6 Mads Ostberg (Norway) Citroen DS3 +22.5
7 Thierry Neuville (Belgium) Hyundai i20 +32.0
8 Juho Hanninen (Finland) Hyundai i20 +42.0
9 Pontus Tindemand (Sweden) Ford Fiesta RS +44.6
10 Kris Meeke (Britain) Citroen DS3 +46.6
Mikkelsen 3 (SS1, SS4, SS6)
Ogier 3 (SS2, SS3, SS7)
Tanak 1 (SS5)