Former World Rally champion Petter Solberg will contest the Monte Carlo Rally in a Peugeot 207. The outing will be Solberg's first appearance in the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, which kicks off with the prestigious January event.
"I was very surprised when Olivier Quesnel, director of Citroen Racing and Peugeot Sport, contacted me and asked if I would be a guest driver for the 2011 IRC Rallye Monte Carlo in January," said Solberg. "Of course I had to accept! The manufacturer team will run the car, and they wanted to hire me for this event to secure a good result for the team.
"As for me, this means more competitive kilometers in a rally car and a new experience, as I have not entered an IRC event before. There is also live coverage of some of the stages, which will be exciting."
Solberg never managed to win the Monte Carlo event when it was still a round of the WRC. A privateer Citroen driver for the past two years since Subaru's exit from the WRC, he has yet to announce his plans for the full 2011 season, but emphasized that his Peugeot run was a one-off deal for the Monte and he was not planning a full-time IRC switch.
"This is a one-time arrangement, and I have no plans for a future in the IRC," said Solberg. "My plan is still to be in the WRC, and fight for the championship, in 2011."
Peugeot will also enter a car for ex-grand prix driver and Le Mans star Stephane Sarrazin once again, but at present 2009 Monte winner Sebastien Ogier is not on the list for the '11 event.
Other leading drivers in Peugeots in Monte Carlo include new Peugeot UK signing Guy Wilks, plus series regulars Thierry Neuville, Bruno Magalhaes and Bryan Bouffier.