Swedish Rally

Surface: Snow

There are few sights more dramatic than a World Rally Car sliding through the dimly lit forests as its headlights blaze off towering snowbanks on either side, plumes of snow churning up behind it as all four snow-studded wheels scrabble for traction.

Sweden, the only true snow rally on the calendar, provides incredible sights for the spectators and a real challenge for the drivers, when it is snowing that is. Milder weather in Sweden actually detracts from the spectacle, as the cars are forced to tear up gravel roads instead sliding on snow and ice.

But the event is positioned to get the maximum snow out of the sky and the drivers sweep down narrow roads lined with snowbanks, often nudging the car against them to correct a slide.

This type of rally requires a specialised style of driving, and it is no coincidence that Scandinavians have dominated the event throughout its history. Colin enjoys this event, though, and obviously wants to overthrow the Scandinavians on home soil.

Freezing temperatures and relatively fast stages prove hard on the cars, and the teams that have to work on them. The Swedish rally is a true test of skill and character, and is a feather in the cap of all the previous winners.

Colin made his name in Sweden, contesting the event in 1986 behind the wheel of a Nova. He returned three years later with a four-wheel-drive Sierra and his 15th place overall launched him on the international stage..