Sebastien Ogier will take in the Rallye Monte Carlo later this month, having been selected to compete for the 'BFGoodrich Drivers Team' in a Kronos-run Peugeot 207 S2000.
Ogier, who won the Junior World Rally Championship last year and who will compete in the WRC with the Citroen Junior Team this season, was one of 75 applicants who applied for the drive on the opening round of the 2009 Intercontinental Rally Challenge.
In the end the young Frenchman got eleven votes, cast by a panel comprising 16 representatives of the national media, plus representatives from BFGoodrich, Kronos Racing and the FFSA.
"It's fantastic news," said Ogier. "I wasn't expecting to be chosen, but I have to admit that it was a dream I had been nurturing!
"I would like to thank BFGoodrich for putting together this exceptional programme, as well as the panel for putting their confidence in me. I have no intention of letting them down."
Ogier will now take part in a test near Monaco on January 16, before linking up with the three other regular Kronos IRC drivers - namely Nicolas Vouilloz, Freddy Loix and Kris Meeke, for the event itself, which runs from January 21-24.
Kronos boss Marc van Dalen meanwhile revealed that the calibre of the final five shortlisted applicants was very strong: "Given the exceptionally high standard of the drivers whose names figured on the shortlist, it was a very tough call indeed," he stated. "In the end, the vote went to a very promising young driver who is none other than the defending Junior World Champion.
"His experience will help us to be competitive on the Monte Carlo which could well turn out to be difficult given the recent spell of wintry weather. Sebastien will be able to count on the full support of our team and on the competitiveness of his tyres to give it his very best shot."
Michelin Group Competition director Frédéric Henry-Biabaud added that he is confident the 'BFG Drivers Team' programme will be a success again in 2009.
"I would first of all like to congratulate Sebastien Ogier on his nomination; it's a first class opportunity for the 25-year old youngster. The BFGoodrich Drivers Team programme is unique in the world of international motor sport, especially in this case since the event in question is the celebrated 'Monte'. The BFGoodrich Drivers Team was tremendously successful in 2008 and I am convinced it will be an equally emotional occasion this time round," he summed-up.