Stobart Motorsport have backed MotoGP star Valentino Rossi's bid to raise funds for Children In Need on next month's Wales Rally GB. Rossi will drive a Ford Focus RS with full Stobart livery and incorporate the charity's logo and mascot Pudsey Bear.

In an effort to increase charitable donations for the Children in Need appeal the Stobart team are offering a once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to one lucky person by putting up for auction a priceless item within the realms of world motorsport.

In keeping with all Eddie Stobart trucks, and the team's other rally cars, the five times MotoGP champ will sport a girl's name on the front of his car; and the choice of name will go the highest bidder in a charity auction. After the event, the name will then be transferred to one of the 1850 Eddie Stobart trucks where it will be cemented in the history books of the trucking Superbrand. The winner will also receive Stobart VIP hospitality for the event.

The auction will run from today until Friday 21 November and details on how to place your bid can be found at

The 29-year-old Italian is attempting the Cardiff-based event for the second time in his career and will be in the safe hands of expert co-driver Carlo Cassina who has contested 24 WRC events in his career. Cassina's impressive resume includes one victory on Rally Portugal in 1988 beside the last and only Italian to win the World Rally Championship for drivers, Miki Biasion.

For decades the Eddie Stobart transport company has upheld an idiosyncratic tradition of identifying its many trucks by allowing their drivers to choose a female's name to adorn it. The fact that thousands of people are currently on the waiting list to name a Stobart truck demonstrates the popularity of the iconic UK-based logistics firm; now part of the newly-formed Stobart Group. This tradition has since been employed by its motorsport wing which has seen cars named by their drivers in the WRC, British Rally Championship, Production World Rally Championship and the Fiesta SportingTrophy.

Valentino Rossi said:

"If two wheels are the big love of my life, 4 wheels, and especially rally cars, are surely my big passion! Having the chance to race at the Wales Rally GB and having, at the same time, the possibility to raise funds for Children In Need is something really special and I am very proud and happy. I cannot wait to be in the car and to have a lot of fun!"

Stobart Group CEO Andrew Tinkler said:

"We are very excited to have Valentino driving a Stobart car on Wales Rally GB and its only right that the company does its bit to help raise money for the Children in Need charity which he is driving for. I am a great fan of Valentino's and it will be a massive compliment to have our brand on his car and it will really bring a lot of excitement to the whole team next month."

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-credit: stobart