Rally Sweden should be cancelled, says WRC champion Sebastien Ogier

World Rally champion Sebastien Ogier believes Rally Sweden should be cancelled

Rally Sweden should be cancelled, says WRC champion Sebastien Ogier

Talking to local newspaper Varmlands Folkblad after the opening day of the recce for the Karlstad-based event, the Volkswagen driver said he did not understand why they had started reconnaissance.

While recent warm weather has left the roads clear of snow and ice, the organisers are hoping a sharp drop in temperatures will freeze the roads hard enough to run the scaled down itinerary announced on Monday.

ANALYSIS: Why Rally Sweden is still in jeopardy

Asked if he thought the event could run, Ogier told the Swedish newspaper: "No. I do not think so.

"The only routes we can run are in Norway [where some of Friday's leg is based]. We can run a short sprint rally there, that's OK.

"But the rest is a gravel rally and it would be completely unsafe to try.

"If we try to run the race, we'll lose the studs immediately and then it becomes really dangerous.

"I do not understand why we're conducting the recce. We are destroying the roads for no reason."

Of significant concern is the fact that the stages covered on Wednesday were the most northerly roads and are believed to be in the best condition.

Coming out of one particularly wet and muddy stage, Ogier told the newspaper: "I don't know what we're doing here.

"There's no point being here. I don't know who took this decision, but it's completely idiotic."

Ogier admitted he had real sympathy for the plight of the organisers.

"I know it's a really difficult decision for everyone, but it's simply not possible to run this time," he said.

"I'm sorry for all the trouble it would mean, but it would be too dangerous to try to drive on gravel roads where the studded tyres are not suited."

Ott Tanak echoed Ogier's views, the Estonian tweeting: "Great conditions on Norway stages, but no way to have a winter rally on Sweden stages."

The crews are due to complete their recce on Thursday night, with the event scheduled to start the first of 13 of an originally planned 21 stages on Friday morning.

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FIA insists Rally Sweden is on despite Ogier's cancellation call

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