Pontus Tidemand will return to WRC action in a Ford Fiesta World Rally Car at next month’s Rally Turkey (12 - 15 September).
The Swede has not appeared since driving an M-Sport Ford car at the season-opening Rallye Monte-Carlo in January and his home event the following month. He finished 20th in Monte-Carlo after suspension problems and eighth in Sweden.
The 2017 WRC 2 world champion, who will be partnered by Ola Fløene, experienced Turkey’s rough gravel speed tests last year in a Skoda Fabia and will test on similar roads with the team ahead of round 11 of the 14-rally series.
“I’m so excited to be back in the FIA World Rally Championship and back with the M-Sport team. I’ve been waiting for this since we completed Rally Sweden in February,” said Tidemand.
“I’m fully focused on preparing as thoroughly as possible because I know from last year that Turkey is a really tough rally, but I’m up for the challenge.
“I’m hoping to have good progression during the rally and that I’ll be able to be more competitive now that I’ve got some experience under my belt.”
Team principal Rich Millener said he was looking forward to seeing how Tidemand fared in Turkey.
“He didn’t have the best of luck earlier this year – road position and some technical issues working against him – but when you take all of that into account it was a really solid debut and we’re keen to see what he can do on gravel.
“Pontus is an all-rounder who’s competitive on all surfaces. He’s got the talent and we want to see him take the next step up in his career,” he added.