Stephane Lefebvre says he wants to use this year's Rallye Monte Carlo as a platform to prove himself in the WRC's premier class.
The 23-year-old French driver is preparing for just his sixth WRC event rally but is determined to show he deserves his shot in the top category having been promoted into the Citroen-backed Abu Dhabi Total WRT squad for 2016.
Lefebvre has strong form at Rallye Monte Carlo after taking two class wins in two appearances at the event and hopes he can prove himself in the Citroen DS3 WRC against more experienced rivals.
“Monte-Carlo is a rally where I have done fairly well in the past, since I won my class in 2011 and then secured the WRC2 category win last year. This year, I would dearly love to get a good result and prove that I can be counted on,” Lefebrve said. “I like the course here, but I will be giving it all the respect such a legendary rally deserves.”
Lefebvre also says he'll be adopting a conservative strategy at the challenging mixed surface event and hopes to use team-mate Kris Meeke as a yardstick to assess his progress and potentially what improvements he may need for the year ahead.
“The Monte-Carlo is not a sprint like some of the other World Championship rallies,” he explained. “We saw last year how quickly gaps can be established and then disappear. You must never get too carried away and just build your strategy over the course of the stages. I'll be counting on the experience of the team's members to help me with that.
“I don't have any specific goal as regards the result, I would be pleased if I manage to keep improving something like I did at the end of last year on tarmac, whilst trying to stay in touch with Kris. I have the good fortune to have a team-mate who is very quick on these roads, so he'll be my marker.”