M-Sport gives Monte Carlo Rally winner Bouffier two '18 WRC outings

M-Sport has recruited 2011 Monte Carlo Rally winner Bryan Bouffier to drive its third Ford Fiesta on two rounds of this year's World Rally Championship

M-Sport gives Monte Carlo Rally winner Bouffier two '18 WRC outings

The 39-year-old will join Sebastien Ogier and Elfyn Evans at M-Sport for the 2018 WRC opener in Monte Carlo later this month and return for the Tour of Corsica in April.

Bouffier won both events when they were part of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge and its European Rally Championship successor.

He also finished second only to Ogier when he drove an M-Sport Ford Fiesta RS WRC on the 2014 Monte Carlo.

"I honestly didn't think I would get an opportunity to drive this car, not even on tests, so I am very excited," said Bouffier.

"It's always a great pleasure to work with Malcolm [Wilson] and the M-Sport team and their amazing success in 2017 makes me very proud to work with them again.

"Monte and Corsica are two very different events, but they are also two of my favourites.

"They're the two French rounds of the season and it is always a pleasure to drive on home soil - even more so with this new car."

Bouffier drove an M-Sport Fiesta on the 2016 Monte Carlo Rally and was running seventh when he broke the suspension on Sisteron.

Last year he used an M-Sport-build Fiesta R5 to finish third in WRC2 on the Monte and win two ERC rounds.

Wilson said Bouffier had been recruited because "his experience is unrivalled" on the Monte and in Corsica.

"These are two of the most specialised rallies on the calendar and the conditions and tyre selections can so often determine who succeeds," Wilson added.

"With Bryan's knowledge, we will have another string to our bow as we look to defend our championship titles."

M-Sport is expected to make a further announcement about its third-car plans at this week's Autosport International.

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