Rally Sweden faces cancellation due to warm weather

Rally Sweden organisers scrap eight of 21 stages after unexpected warm weather

Photo by: Reuters (Archive)
Photo by: Reuters (Archive)

Finland's Jari-Matti Latvala and his co-driver Miikka Anttila drive their Ford Fiesta WRC on their way to the overall victory in the Rally of Sweden in Hagfors February 8, 2014

Rally Sweden organisers have axed eight of the event's 21 scheduled stages after unusually warm weather threatened to force the cancellation of the second round of the world championship this weekend.

The season's only pure winter event, with cars using special studded tyres on frozen roads covered with snow and ice, starts on today and ends on Sunday.

However, rain and daytime temperatures of around four degrees Celsius in the region around Hagfors had triggered fears that the studded tyres would damage the soft surface and make conditions too dangerous.

The official wrc.com website said organisers submitted a revised route on Monday, cancelling Thursday's opening super-special stage among others. Instead drivers continued to monitor the course - which also has some stages in Norway - in normal road cars.

"I'm sure the stages in Norway are very nice," said Mads Ostberg. "We have a proper ice base and some small snow banks. So quite nice there, a little bit more tricky on the Swedish side."

Jari Matti-Latvala added: "I think Friday should be fairly good obviously there will be some challenges on Saturday and Sunday. Well there is some zero point five minus now, so we hope for the best."

"This year's stages are more tricky without the snow banks, but I'm not afraid of the challenge. I like this," Sebastien Ogier said in a wrc.com news source.

Colder weather is forecast for later in the week.

TRTWorld, Reuters