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WRC Rally Sweden: Mikkelsen and Lappi tied for second behind Tanak

Andreas Mikkelsen Hyundai WRC Rally Sweden 2019

Andreas Mikkelsen and Esapekka Lappi are tied for second place on Rally Sweden behind Ott Tanak with three stages remaining, with Thierry Neuville only 2.3 seconds behind them in fourth.

Runaway leader Tanak managed his gap across Saturday's final two stages, which took place on the short Karlstad superspecial first used on Thursday and a shortened version of Friday's last stage, Torsby Sprint.

The main focus was Mikkelsen, Lappi and Neuville's battle over second place, with Lappi 1.9s behind in fourth and Neuville 4.5s off his Hyundai team-mate after the afternoon rerun of Saturday morning's three stages.

Citroen driver Lappi carved 1.5s out of Mikkelsen's advantage on the Karlstad superspecial and then won back another 0.4s through Torsby Sprint, leaving the pair dead level, both 54.5s behind Tanak's Toyota.

Ott Tanak Toyota WRC Rally Sweden 2019

Hovering close behind, Neuville won the day-ending Torsby Sprint, taking over a second out of Mikkelsen on each of the two short tests to finish 2.3s behind the tied pair.

Elfyn Evans lost four seconds to Neuville across those two stages, casting him further adrift of the podium battle that he had been part of this morning. He remains fifth, 11.9s off Neuville.

A battle for sixth between Kris Meeke and Sebastien Loeb had looked set to go Loeb's way based on his pace earlier in the afternoon, and they headed to the pair of superspecials separated by only 0.5s.

A strong run from Meeke opened that gap up, though Loeb claimed half a second back on Torsby Sprint to finish the day 1.6s adrift of Meeke in seventh. Pontus Tidemand continues to hold eighth place.

Autosport Live's Rally Sweden coverage resumes from 6.40am UK time on Sunday

Leading positions after SS16

PosDriverTeamCarGap
1Ott Tanak, M.JarveojaToyota Gazoo Racing WRTToyota2h19m31.7s
2Andreas Mikkelsen, A.JagerHyundai Shell Mobis WRTHyundai54.5s
2Esapekka Lappi, J.FermCitroen Total WRTCitroen54.5s
4Thierry Neuville, N.GilsoulHyundai Shell Mobis WRTHyundai56.8s
5Elfyn Evans, S.MartinM-Sport Ford WRTFord1m08.7s
6Kris Meeke, S.MarshallToyota Gazoo Racing WRTToyota1m36.5s
7Sebastien Loeb, D.ElenaHyundai Shell Mobis WRTHyundai1m38.1s
8Pontus Tidemand, O.FloeneM-Sport Ford WRTFord3m08.0s
9Ole-Christian Veiby, J.AnderssonOle Christian VeibyVolkswagen5m23.4s
10Jari Huttunen, A.LinnaketoJari HuttunenSkoda5m35.4s

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