Included on the list of runners are Sebastien Ogier and Julien Ingrassia, who took part on their first world championship rally on the gravel event in 2008 at the wheel of a Citroen C2 Super 1600.
And the hugely capable French duo, now part of Volkswagen Motorsport’s long-term WRC endeavours, didn’t just make up the numbers, despite their absence of knowledge of the high-altitude stages and WRC competition.
Indeed, they finished top Junior world championship crew by more than 90 seconds in a stunning 10th overall to mark their arrival on the world stage having gone fastest in their class on 10 of the 19 tests.
While Ogier’s path to glory was eased when pre-event favourite Martin Prokop rolled on the first stage before retiring with an engine sensor failure, the then 24-year-old was more than a worthy winner.
In the days before their fierce rivalry gripped the WRC, Sebastien Loeb had actually helped Ogier secure his drive with the Citroen-blessed PH Sport operation for his Junior campaign in 2008.
After winning the event outright, the multiple world champion said: “I cannot drive for him or take the notes but if he needs some advice I am here to give it. But he’s clever enough to know what he has to do. I genuinely think he has the chance to be good and I am sure one day he can be a very good driver.”