Thierry Neuville has stepped up his bid to win the Intercontinental Rally Challenge drivers' crown by confirming his participation on the Prime Yalta Rally.

Neuville shot to equal second in the IRC classification with his stunning maiden victory on Tour de Corse-E.Leclerc in mid-May.

His original schedule of events did not include the all-asphalt round in Ukraine from 2-4 June but the 22-year-old will now compete in Yalta at the expense of his planned entry on Barum Czech Rally Zlin in late August.

"Upon reflection, we felt it was better to send Thierry and Nicolas [Gilsoul, his co-driver] to Ukraine rather than Czech Republic," said Team Peugeot Belgium-Luxembourg spokesperson.

"To all IRC competitors, the Yalta Rally will be a discovery and we believe Thierry can be particularly competitive there. This will maximise his chances of winning and also allow him to accumulate more kilometres on asphalt before the Ypres [Rally, his home event]."

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