Peugeot has mathematically won the 2008 IRC manufacturers' title, after finishing second and third on the Sanremo Rally in Italy at the weekend with Nicolas Vouilloz and Luca Rossetti.

In total, the Peugeot 207 Super 2000 has scored seven wins and eleven other podium places from the eight Intercontinental Rally Challenge events held so far in 2008.

This achievement is thanks to victories from a variety of Peugeot teams, such as the Peugeot Belgium pairing of Vouilloz and Freddy Loix as well as the Peugeot Italy car driven by Rossetti. Juho Hanninen's privately-entered Peugeot also triumphed in Russia.

With two cars on the podium in Italy, Peugeot has now ensured that it cannot be caught in the manufacturers' title race.

"Our general feeling is one of relief," said Peugeot Belgium director Jonathan Goodman. "It's always a significant undertaking to embark on a title campaign such as this one, but thanks to everybody's hard work we're very proud to enjoy this success."

Abarth meanwhile is guaranteed second place but by contrast, the final podium position in the manufacturers' classification is still wide open.

The IRC drivers' champion is also yet to be decided with several drivers still in contention for the crown, as are the driver and manufacturer titles in the IRC 2WD Cup.

"After a good start last year, it's been another really solid season for ourselves and Peugeot so far in 2008," added Vouilloz, who currently heads the IRC drivers' championship.

"We've all been extremely focussed on the championship from the start of the season, and it's great to have wrapped up the manufacturers' series in Italy. Now I'm going to concentrate all my efforts on the drivers' title though, starting from the Rallye du Valais in Switzerland next month."

The final IRC classifications will be confirmed after the last event of the year, the Rally China, which runs from December 5-7.



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