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WRC NEWS 

M-Sport completes Qatar deal for lead Ford WRC programme

Nasser Al-Attiyah, Cyprus IRCEx-Ford works team M-Sport has confirmed that it has secured Qatar backing to run a three-car squad in the 2013 World Rally Championship.

Qatar had been rumoured as the backer for the British-based team since Ford withdrew its support last month.

The new outfit will be known as the Qatar M-Sport World Rally Team, boss Malcolm Wilson revealed.

Nasser Al-Attiyah was key to the deal and will contest seven rallies in one of the cars.

"We are delighted to welcome such a prestigious partner as Qatar on board for 2013," Wilson said. "The partnership with Nasser and the Qatari State will enable M-Sport to continue at the pinnacle of the sport and we are looking forward to working together in the future.

"Since the 2012 season came to a close, work has not stopped and the entire team is working around the clock to ensure we deliver a strong package for next year."

Al-Attiyah, Qatar's leading rally driver, a seven-time Middle East Rally champion and former Dakar Rally winner, drove a Citroen for his first top-class WRC campaign this season.

"We are looking forward to building on our strong relationship with M-Sport and working with them in 2013," he said.

"I have a good knowledge of the car having driven the Fiesta S2000 to its debut win in 2010 and now looking to secure my eighth title in the Middle East with the Fiesta RRC.

"I am really looking forward to getting behind the wheel of the Fiesta RS WRC and contesting as many WRC events as I can around my other motorsport commitments."

A further announcement on the team's driver line-up is expected later on Monday.

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