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  Wednesday, 5 February, 2003, 14:36 GMT
Burns eyes Swedish glory
Richard Burns in action in Monte Carlo
Burns finished fifth in Monte Carlo
Richard Burns is optimistic he can land his first victory for Peugeot at the Swedish Rally this weekend.

The Briton failed to pick up a win in his first year with the French team and will have to beat off fierce Scandinavian competition in the most snowbound event of the season.

World champion Marcus Gronholm - winner in Sweden for the last two years - is a strong favourite to make it a hat-trick.

We have a chance of winning, but only a slender chance

Colin McRae
But 2001 world champion Burns is not afraid of the testing conditions.

"I'm looking forward to Sweden and I'm hoping we'll enjoy plenty of snow," the Englishman told his website. "It's been a bit patchy recently.

"I set my first fastest stage time for Peugeot there last year and it would be great to get my first win for the team in Scandinavia."

Scotland's Colin McRae is more downbeat about his chances despite finishing second in Monte Carlo - the season's opening event.

The 34-year-old insists he still needs more time to adjust to his new Citroen Xsara.

"We have a chance of winning, but only a slender chance," said McRae.

"It's still a little bit early. I still lack running time with the Xsara and I will need to drive it more to feel totally confident."

But he added: "Sweden is a rally that's great fun to compete on.

"The snow banks are very forgiving when you get it wrong. If you use them well, they help keep you on the road.

"I think my driving style is well suited to these conditions. In spite of the speeds we get up to, the Swedish isn't a dangerous event.

"It's not a rally where you can hurt yourself."

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