The Norwegian, who placed fourth in this year’s FIA World Rally Championship standings on the back of landing his maiden victory in Portugal earlier in the season, will pilot a Ford Fiesta RS WRC alongside existing co-driver Jonas Andersson from Sweden. It’s 25-year-old Ostberg’s first full campaign since he emerged in the global arena as a teenager in 2006.
He said: “This is a great opportunity for me. I have had many dreams in my career, but achieving this drive is definitely one of the biggest and I am certainly going to try and make the most of it.”
Ostberg is no stranger to the M-Sport fold having first sampled the company’s Ford Fiesta S2000 in 2010 before stepping up to the World Rally Car version the following season when he finished second on his debut in the machine on Rally Sweden.
“I am really happy to have been chosen to join the team and continue working closely with M-Sport next season,” said Ostberg, who has 15 WRC stage wins to his name. “We’ve been working with the [Ford Fiesta RS WRC] for two years now - we know the car and we know the team so from the technical side of things, I think we will be in a really good position as there won’t be too much of a change to get used to.
“But from the other side of things, it will still be a big challenge - albeit a big step in the right direction. This season has been really good for us, and I hope we can continue that into 2013. I can’t wait to get back behind the wheel and start testing with the team in the next couple of weeks.”
M-Sport boss Malcolm Wilson said: “Mads’ performance this year has been very impressive. He has always had the speed, but his progression on Tarmac and the maturity he has demonstrated this season proves that he is ready to make the next step in his career and made him the ideal candidate to join the team in 2013. He has an old head on young shoulders and I am confident that we will see some strong performances from him as he rises to the challenge next year.”