The 100th anniversary of the first Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo will be celebrated with the event remaining a part of the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, after event rejected overtures to return to the World Rally Championship for 2011.
The Automobile Club de Monaco has confirmed that the 79th running of the iconic event will take place between 19-23 January, once again opening the IRC calendar, but with a modified route as it attempts to combine tradition and modernity, bringing together the best elements from different events.
The route will return to famous landmarks steeped in Monte Carlo Rally history, but with a completely new distribution of stages. The first day will concentrate on roads in the Ardeche region, before moving on to Drome for day two. The final day will then be held on the mountain roads above Monaco and Nice, with a total of 13 special stages, some run twice, in use as part of the full 1340km route.
The participation of amateur drivers will also be a major priority for this year's rally, given their history with the event.
"Amateur drivers have been instrumental in some of the most wonderful episodes of the history of the Monte Carlo Rally," ACM general manager René Isoart explained, "With their involvement, the rally was able to develop and span a whole century of automobile sport with great success, so we would like the rally centenary to reflect this spirit. In early September, we will unveil a range of initiatives to encourage participation of amateur drivers in this historic edition, along with full details of the route."