Pirelli motorsport boss Paul Hembery has welcomed the news that the tyre supplier is to make a return to the World Rally Championship next year.

The FIA confirmed on Thursday in Finland that Pirelli would join Michelin, Hankook and DMACK as one of four suppliers for the new campaign.

Pirelli was previously the sole supplier to teams from 2008 to 2010 and then supported both the Star Driver scheme and WRC Academy.

As yet, Pirelli had still to agree any deals with potential teams for 2014.

"We'd like to thank the FIA for looking favourably on our candidature and we're absolutely delighted to come back to a sport that we feel very much at home in," Hembery said. "We've also taken this decision following requests from our customers, now that the World and European championship regulations are becoming more closely aligned.

"For the time being we don't have any agreements with any official manufacturers so we're not expecting to compete for overall victories but instead provide the best possible service to our customers. We're confident in the excellence of our products, and their competitiveness with the latest generation of World Rally Car machinery. For a tyre manufacturer, rallying is a fantastic challenge as the tyres are tested on every road surface, in a huge variety of climatic conditions.

"Rallying is an extreme sport on the limit of adhesion, where the tyres can make a massive difference. We're really looking forward to that challenge and becoming a proactive partner in a championship that is set to go from strength to strength, thanks to increased promotion and a high level of interest from new manufacturers."


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