After receiving 48 applications in Portugal, 54 in Belgium and 24 in the Czech Republic, BFGoodrich has been taken aback by the popularity of its Drivers Team scheme ahead of its fourth port of call in Italy.

When entries for the opportunity to contest September's Rallye Sanremo as part of the supported line-up closed on 1 August, the Commissione Sportive Automobilistica Italiana had received no fewer than 133 applications from crews wishing to fly the BFGoodrich Drivers Team's flag.

The list of applicants has to be whittled down to just five candidates for the Italian event, the shortlist being the responsibility of BFGoodrich and Kronos Racing, before being handed over to a panel of Italian journalists who will take part in a secret vote on 28 August to select the 'winning' crew.

Once selected, the crew will get a test session in San Remo on 22 September to familiarise themselves with the Kronos-run Peugeot 207 Super 2000 they will pilot alongside the team's regular pairing of Freddy Loix and Nicolas Vouilloz.

"The BFGoodrich Drivers Team is clearly a huge success," declared the company's competition director Fr?d?ric Henry-Biabaud, "Following the recent announcement of the name of the driver chosen by the Czech Republic media in Prague to represent the BFGoodrich Drivers Team on the forthcoming Barum Rally, we were thrilled to learn that no fewer than 133 crews had applied to defend BFGoodrich's colours on the Rallye Sanremo.

"We are obviously delighted to see how popular this innovative project has become, and our commitment to helping drivers from different countries via the BFGoodrich Drivers Team scheme is an eloquent sign of the brand's investment in the world of rallying."

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