Andreas Mikkelsen will drive for Skoda UK Motorsport in the 2011 Intercontinental Rally Challenge.

Mikkelsen, from Norway, finished seventh in this season's IRC drivers' rankings at the wheel of an M-Sport Ford Fiesta S2000, six points behind outgoing Skoda UK pilot Guy Wilks, who will switch to the rival Peugeot UK operation for 2011.

Aged 21, Mikkelsen is regarded as one of the rallying's brightest prospects. He underlined his potential by finishing second on RACMSA Rally of Scotland in mid-October before winning the inaugural Love Cyprus Golden Stage Rally last weekend.

"I am very happy to be asked to join the Skoda family and to be given this opportunity from Skoda UK to do the 2011 IRC," said Mikkelsen, who was unveiled as a Skoda UK driver at the White Dove Motor Group dealership in Cardiff, UK, earlier today (Thursday). "It is a fantastic new step in my rally career and to be in a Skoda seat with all the experience from Skoda Motorsport. My goal will be in to win the championship in 2011 – no more, no less."

Ola Floene will continue to co-drive Mikkelsen when the 2011 IRC season gets underway with Rallye Monte-Carlo from 18-22 January.

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