Eight-time World Rally Champion co-driver Daniel Elena's protégé Sebastien Chardonnet will drive a Citroen DS3 WRC on his home Rally de France round next month.
As well as enjoying the backing of Elena - who has won 74 rounds of the WRC alongside Sebastien Loeb – the 23-year-old is the third Sebastien to be given assistance from France's governing body of motorsport, the FFSA. Sebastiens Loeb and Ogier went before him.
Chardonnet has been building his experience of the WRC through this year, contesting gravel rounds in Portugal, Greece, Finland and Wales in a DS3 R3. But now comes his big chance, his first outing in a World Rally Car.
Elena said: "It is important to take thing one step at a time, because there is so much a young crew has to take on board.
"At the same time, you can't afford to miss a chance – and this is a golden opportunity. Sebastien and Thibault [de La Haye, co-driver] need to keep their eye on the ball, stay focused and forget the pressure."
Chardonnet added: "I can still hardly believe that I have such a competitive car for my home event, it's like Christmas has come early."
France's round of the WRC has been dominated by Sebastiens since it was run in Alsace, with Loeb winning in 2010 and Ogier taking the honours last time out.
- Daniel Elena
- Sebastien Loeb