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Winner Esapekka Lappi, Hyundai World Rally Team
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Race report

How Lappi survived Swedish snow carnage to snap his lengthy WRC drought

He didn't get the most points thanks to a quirk in the new WRC points system, but Esapekka Lappi can avoid the distinction of being a one-hit wonder after evading the problems that afflicted his rivals to continue Hyundai's excellent start to the season. But it was Elfyn Evans who came away with the best score to close in on the championship lead

Six years, six months and 19 days is a long time in motorsport. For Esapekka Lappi, it would have felt like an eternity since he last stood on the top step of a top-flight World Rally Championship podium. Doubts he would never win again had begun to creep into his mind, but in Sweden they were extinguished.

In the time since a fresh-faced Finn burst onto the WRC scene to claim a maiden victory at Rally Finland in 2017, Lappi has contested 60 rallies driving for Toyota, Citroen, M-Sport and Hyundai. There have been several opportunities to add to his win tally, but it took an attritional Rally Sweden for the stars to align for one of the service park’s true characters.

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