Reigning Rally Class champion Yuriy Protasov has confirmed that he will contest five rounds of next year's FIA World Rally Championship as part of his prize for winning this year's highly-competitive Rally Class.
Piloting a Subaru R4, Ukraine's Protasov will compete on Rallye Monte Carlo in January before taking part in snow-covered Rally Sweden one month later.
Protasov will then travel to Central America to contest Rally Mexico before taking on two long-haul rallies: Argentina and Australia.
Protasov's prize derives from winning this year's highly-competitive Rally Class: a six-round championship where competitors use identical Group N-specification Subaru Imprezas to compete for the highest number of points.
Monte Carlo is an iconic rally and will undoubtedly provide an exciting start to my season.
Recently declared an International Series in accordance with the FIA, the 2013 Rally Class will take place over six rounds: Portugal, Greece, Finland, Germany, France and Spain.
The overall winner of next year's Rally Class will receive four fully-funded rallies in the 2014 World Rally Championship at the wheel of a Subaru Impreza R4. The runner-up will receive one fully-funded rally with a Group N Subaru Impreza.
"I'm very excited to have confirmed my 2013 schedule and I'd like to take a moment to thank Symtech Racing for this incredible prize," said 28-year-old Protasov.
"I ended up choosing rallies that I thought would most benefit my future rally career. Monte Carlo is an iconic rally and will undoubtedly provide an exciting start to my season.
Sweden will provide an extra challenge with the snow-covered tracks but I will be using the surface to try and learn as much as I can on a surface I am unfamiliar with.
Argentina and Australia are new rallies for me so I thought it would be beneficial to use my prize from Symtech to challenge myself and learn as much as I can."
Symtech Racing's Dirk Van der Sluys commented: "Yuriy is an extremely deserving champion and an excellent ambassador for Rally Class.
We're very much looking forward to running him in our R4 car next year, and his results with the Group N car this year including stage times in the overall top 10 demonstrate that he is sure to be a frontrunner in 2013.
This fantastic prize just underlines the fact that Rally Class provides the best value for money of any single-make competition in the World Rally Championship at the moment."