WRC Monte Carlo: Loeb heads up Rally Monte Carlo entry list

 Returning World Rally legend Sebastien Loeb heads up a comprehensive entry list for the 2015 season-opening Rallye Monte Carlo, with 18 WRC cars registered to compete across four manufacturers.
Sebastien Loeb face
The Frenchman, who called time on his WRC participation in 2013 having notched up a record-breaking nine consecutive titles, made the surprise announcement last month that he would return for a one-off outing with Citroen as part of its strategy to promote the DS brand.

His first outing in WRC since the Rallye de France Alsace in 2013, Loeb – who has switched to the WTCC full-time with the French manufacturer – will team up with Kris Meeke in the Citroen Total Abu Dhabi DS3s, with Mads Ostberg driving a third car for the squad.

Loeb’s return will see him go up against the series’ current dominant figure, Sebastien Ogier, who will look to kick off his quest for a third consecutive WRC title with VW once more, alongside Jari-Matti Latvala and Andrea Mikkelsen.

In addition to the factory cars, Citroen will also have WRC3 champion Sebastien Chardonnet driving a DS3 as a reward for his efforts in the junior categories, while Yuri Protasov moves to the French firm after driving a Ford Fiesta in 2014.

Ford, meanwhile, will have several representatives, with the M-Sport WRT outfit running Fiestas for Elfyn Evans and series returnee Ott Tanak, while Bryan Bouffier – who finished second in last year’s Monte Carlo Rally – also returns. In addition, Robert Kubica, Henning Solberg, Martin Prokop and Lorenzo Bertelli will enter privateer machines.

Hyundai – the only manufacturer to prevent VW from taking a clean sweep of wins in 2014 – will enter two i20 WRCs for Thierry Neuville and Dani Sordo.

The 2015 Rallye Monte Carlo gets underway on Thursday 22nd January.