March 24, 2012

Abarth: 'Make it your race 2012' entries continue to roll in

Entries for 'Make it your race 2012' continue to roll in, so that the first international talent show for aspiring drivers aged from 18 to 40 is already a success. They opened on March 1, on the website To date, over 17,500 entries coming from the six
countries involved in the project - Italy, Germany, the UK, France, Switzerland and Belgium & Luxembourg - have been collected following a video teaser which was watched about 500,000 times on YouTube and on the dedicated website that till now has totaled more than 124,000 visits.

Of note are the percentages of entrants - Italy (60 per cent) followed by France (12 per cent), Germany e Belgium (both with 10 per cent). In particular in Italy, the North heads up the entries with 42 per cent, whilst Rome is the number one city with 6 per cent, ahead of Turin (5 per cent). Additionally, more than 400 women have entered, and the country boasting the largest female presence is Switzerland (8 per cent of the national total).

These figures herald a successful talent show that will be followed in its entirety by a TV production crew that will be filming the episodes from May to June in various locations. They include the Varano and Franciacorta circuits, in addition to the brand's headquarters in Turin. A total of six 30-minute television episodes will be made, plus one 60-minute episode (summarising the entire initiative). They will broadcast between the end of the summer and autumn, depending on the markets, on the national TV channels currently being decided. In addition, special formats and the backstage story are planned for the web.

All amateur (and therefore unlicensed) drivers aged between 18 and 40 and resident in Italy, Germany, the UK, France, Switzerland or Belgium & Luxembourg are eligible to take part in the talent show. A technical jury make the selections in each country. It will choose 50 aspiring drivers on the basis of information that every candidate can post on the website (one text, one photo or one video). The same juries will then make a second selection by following the leads and preferences coming in from the users of the website and YouTube, Facebook and Twitter channels. This phase will conclude in early April, and from it 105 aspiring drivers will emerge. They will take part in a special Abarth Driving Academy driving experience at de Adamich's International Safe Driving Centre.

The 24 best drivers, representing the six countries, will then go to a Camp where they will live out a team experience for a week and put their abilities to the test: concentration, reflexes, courage, but also safety and sense of responsibility. Then there will also be tests on their ability to relate with the world and more 'ironic' tests aimed at throwing the competitors a curve to gauge their reactions. What will make all this even more fun is the presence of the three BUGS, directly from the 'Le Iene' cult TV programme, playing the roles of masters of ceremony and trouble-makers.

The final test will be a racing driving course that will prepare the top drivers to face the adrenaline rush of the track, ensuring utmost safety through professional, technical and practical training.

Each team will challenge the others, but within each one every driver will be competing with his companions. The six teams will also each have a coach who will be a famous personality in his country, linked to the world of racing and the media (a driver or former driver, engineer, journalist or sports commentator). Even though the names of the captains will be announced only after the selections have been made, today we can disclose that the French team will be led by Margot Laffite, daughter of Formula 1 driver Jacques Laffite and motorsport journalist for a number of French TV channels.

The last phase will single out the six finalists, one per country, who will have the chance to take to the track aboard an Abarth 500 'Assetto Corse' together with the professional drivers in the Trofeo Abarth test on the Franciacorta circuit 24 June 2012. The driver who achieves the best overall place will have a car all to themselves in addition to the possibility of racing in an Abarth 500 Assetto Corse again.

At this point it is clear that 'Make it your race' is a brand new talent show, the first ever dedicated to aspiring drivers. It will not deal with just engines and track racing, but will also talk about competing with others and with oneself, the desire to take risks and take up challenges, and the constant quest to improve oneself. 'Make it your race' is once again a chance for Abarth to promote the 'democratisation of racing', a concept dear to the heart of its Founder Karl Abarth, by offering young people the possibility to make a lifelong dream come true - taking part in a real competition, with a real racing car.


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