Francois Duval looks set to have to sit out the Rallye Automobile Monte Carlo, despite having been included on the provisional entry list, which was released on Wednesday.

According to his personal website,, it is 'probable' that he will not start the event, the opening round in the 2007 FIA World Rally Championship, which runs from January 18-21, as First Motorsport have not received any guarantees that they will get factory support from Skoda.

Duval, who had a bit of a mixed season in 2006, with the First Motorsport-run Fabia WRC, doing eight out of the 16 events, is understandably frustrated that he will not to be able to compete at the Principality.

"I am disappointed," he confirmed on his website. "It is a rally which I like and which is difficult due to the conditions and getting the tyre choice right. I am sure I could have got a good result there though - and it should not be forgotten that I gave Skoda there first 'proper' fastest stage time there last year [when I was fastest on day one in SS5].

"Unfortunately though this is the only possibility I have at the moment to compete, because all of the other proposals, which I have, are for later on in the season."

Duval, who took his first and to date only WRC win with Citroen Sport back in 2005 in Australia, ended the 2006 season 19th in the drivers' championship, having scored 5 points - his best finishes a sixth place in Spain and two eighth places in Sardinia and GB.

Speaking to Radio earlier this month at the Rally GB, Duval was happy with his form on the Welsh event, although he said he was not certain what he would be doing in '07.

"I am very happy [with eighth here]. It is a very good result for Skoda. The stages were really good," he noted. "They were very slippery - a typical GB Rally. Everything was OK with the Fabia, except on Saturday, with the steering. Apart from that the car was perfect. On the first and second day we did some really good times. I am very happy for First Motorsport."


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