Petter Solberg was quickest on the 4.19-kilometer Laajavuori superspecial that commenced Rally Finland.
The fired-up Solberg Citroen driver said he had made a cautious start, but still beat Ford's Mikko Hirvonen to the fastest time by one second.
Championship leader Sebastien Loeb (Citroen) and Ford number two Jari-Matti Latvala are currently tied for third, with Sebastien Ogier fifth after his first stage in the factory Citroen team. He is equal with Henning Solberg, back in the Stobart Ford WRC for Finland after his step down to the S2000 car in Bulgaria. Dani Sordo, driving for Citroen Junior with Ogier moving into his works seat, is seventh.
Crowd favorite Kimi Raikkonen took the 10th-quickest time in Citroen Junior's second car, with returning hero Juha Kankkunen 13th for Stobart Ford, 9.6sec off the pace.
Pos Driver Car Time/Gap
1. Petter Solberg Citroen 2m33.2s
2. Mikko Hirvonen Ford + 1.0s
3. Sebastien Loeb Citroen + 1.6s
4. Jari-Matti Latvala Ford + 1.6s
5. Sebastien Ogier Citroen + 3.2s
6. Henning Solberg Ford + 3.2s
7. Dani Sordo Citroen + 3.8s
8. Matthew Wilson Ford + 5.4s
9. Mads Ostberg Subaru + 5.4s
10. Kimi Raikkonen Citroen + 6.4s