Rally legend Francois Delecour will contest the opening round of the inaugural Tuthill Porsche Challenge, the Bulldog Historic Rally on April 2, it was confirmed recently.
The 48-year-old Frenchman, who impressed by finishing 5th on the Rallye Monte Carlo back in January, the first round of the 2011 Intercontinental Rally Challenge, will drive one of Tuthill Porsche's 10 identical historic-specification 911s on the gravel event, which takes place on forest stages in North Wales.
“I've always been a big Porsche fan and I'm particularly excited about driving on the Welsh stages, some of which I know from doing Rally GB in the past, and which I consider to be among the best in the world,” said Delecour, a winner of four WRC rallies.
“I know Tuthill Porsche by reputation and driving one of their cars will give me a great chance to have a lot of fun.
“I'm not completely sure who I will be competing against but rallies like this tend to get a lot of very good local experts so I know it won't be easy.”
Event regulations don't permit a pre-rally reconnaissance so Delecour and French co-driver James Bocagnano will spend Friday April 1 adapting to their 911 for the first time during a test at Sweet Lamb in Wales.
“It's a huge privilege to add Francois Delecour to the list of world class drivers who have driven for us such as Markku Alen, Stig Blomqvist, Michele Mouton, Walter Rohrl and Bjorn Waldegard,” said Tuthill Porsche director Richard Tuthill. “I've always admired Francois' committed and spectacular driving style and it will be a real treat for the spectators to watch him through the forests of Wales.
“Francois will drive the same Challenge-specification as our other competitors and getting him over here to drive one of our cars is a great way to get the series off to an exciting start.”