Local hero Mikko Hirvonen was five seconds adrift of his Citroen teammate Sebastien Loeb as the battle for top honours at the end of Day 1 on Neste Oil Rally Finland.
Sebastien Loeb, Citroen. (Photo: Citroen Racing)
During the last stage of the day, Finlands' Hirvonen, in a Citroen DS3 WRC, was 1.5s quicker than his teammate, the winner of the FIA World Rally Championship title for the last eight seasons, to narrow the gap between the top two drivers.
Jari-Matti Latvala, Ford. (Photo: BP Ford Motorsport)
Loeb explained he has been struggling with a mechanical issue since the end of the previous stage: "I have a problem with the rear diff since the stage before," he said.