Petter Solberg's team release after Day 1 of Rally Japan:

First day finished here in Japan, with Petter and Chris as overnight leaders. Mikko Hirvonen is second, 9 seconds behind, and Sebastien Ogier is third, 21 seconds behind. Sebastien Loeb is currently 6th, almost one minute behind the leader.

Petter has been struggling all week with fever and a bad flew, and after the two stages on Thursday evening he were completely exhausted. He felt a bit better this morning, and is hoping that one more night with good sleep will do him good.

"It feels great to finish the first day in Japan, as the overnight leader," says Petter Solberg. "We know, and we have shown before that we are able to fight with the others when everything is perfect, and today it has been. Well, maybe except myself. I can really feel that the fever is definitely not helping, and at the end of the long stages today, I had to fight hard to keep focus and I know I lost time. Hope another night with some good sleep will help me. Have no special plan for tomorrow, will just get back out there and do my best."

8 more stages to go tomorrow in Japan, including the longest one of the rally. SS12/15, Kamuycep, is 33kms, and is going to be a real challenge for all the drivers. Also Saturday will finish off with two super specials at the Sapporo Dome. First car will be on the first stage from 10.28 (local time).

Overall classification day 1 – Rally Japan
1. Petter, Citroën
2. Hirvonen, Ford +9,4
3. Ogier, Citorën +21,3
4. Latvala, Ford +22,4
5. Sordo, Citroën +36,5
6. Loeb, Citroën +54,5
7. Henning, Ford +1.22,2
8. Wilson, Ford +3.16,9
9. Villagra, Ford +3.46,5
10. Raikkonen, Citroën +4.03,1

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