Kris Meeke to step aside for some of Citroen's 2016 WRC appearances

The PH Sport-run Citroen team will start some rounds of this year's World Rally Championship without Kris Meeke

The expectation had been that Meeke, who has a long-term Citroen deal, would be in the line-up for each rally in this year's partial programme.

But team principal Yves Matton says Meeke will step aside on selected rounds in an effort to give team-mates Craig Breen and Stephane Lefebvre an equal shot at proving themselves to Citroen.

"The idea is to give approximately an equal amount [of competition] to the three drivers," Matton told Autosport.

"Kris will not do all of the rallies which we will do as a team.

"I want to keep full flexibility and I don't want to talk about who will drive on which rallies or which rallies we will compete on - just in case we make a change in our plans."

Matton confirmed the team's 2016 plans are set, but declined to reveal how many events it will tackle.

Although an eight to 10 round programme is expected, the number could change depending on the progression of testing in the 2017 C3 WRC.

"What the drivers will do will be linked to our test programme as well," Matton added.

Breen made his first appearance with the team at last week's Monte Carlo Rally, where he completed the recce.

"It's just fantastic to be part of the whole team," said the Irishman.

"The recce, everything was a great experience for the future. I stayed on for the rest of the event and that was so worthwhile, to see how these guys operate and to know which person is doing which job.

"When it comes to Sweden it should be a fairly smooth transition in that regard."

Breen will compete for the first time in a DS 3 WRC in Rally Sweden next month, before which he will test the car for one day.

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