Jari-Matti Latvala will be aiming to grab the initiative at the start of the 2016 World Rally Championship as he looks to dethrone Sebastien Ogier.
The Volkswagen Motorsport rally driver endured another frustrating WRC campaign in 2015 after finishing runner-up to Ogier in the drivers' championship for the second straight year. With a clean slate for 2016, Latvala will be targeting the best possible start at Rallye Monte Carlo this weekend, an event he is yet to win in eight previous attempts.
The 30-year-old Finn says achieve victory at the season opener it is vital to master the mixed conditions by relying on ice spies.
“The Rally Monte Carlo is something very special every year,” Latvala said. “The conditions in the mountains can pretty much change from one minute to the next. The roads on the sunny side of a mountain are completely different to the shaded side, where they are often icy.
“The better the communication with the ice spies, the more likely you are to get a good result at the 'Monte'. The presentation alone – to be stood in front of the Royal Palace and hopefully receive a trophy – is the ultimate motivation for me at every 'Monte'.”
The 2016 World Rally Championship gets underway this weekend as Rallye Monte Carlo hosts the season opener on the 22-24 January.