Belfast Telegraph

Breen's Circuit glory bid boosted

By Sammy Hamill

Craig Breen has been given an unexpected opportunity to get to grips with Peugeot's new 208 T16 rally car ahead of the Circuit of Ireland at Easter.

The former World S2000 champion from Waterford heads up the Peugeot Academy team's assault on the European championship and makes his first appearance in the new R5 category car on round three of the series, the rough and rocky Acropolis Rally in Greece next week.

But immediately afterwards the French team will pack up and head to Ireland to give Breen a full-blown tarmac test run on the April 6 Circuit of Kerry, indicating their commitment to giving him the best opportunity of winning his home round of the Euro series.

Breen has driven Peugeot's older 207 Super 2000 model in the first two rounds of the championship and currently lies fifth in the standings. But he has been heavily involved in the development of the new generation R5, working alongside Kris Meeke since the middle of last year.

Breen and Dutchman Kevin Abbring will introduce it to the European championship in Greece next week. And Breen can't wait to get his hands on it.

"I know the car so well as I was heavily involved in its development in my role at the Peugeot Rally Academy. Now it is time to put the lion to the test in an actual competition," he said.

"Being given the chance to bring it to a home rally ahead of the Circuit of Ireland is a real bonus."

Breen can expect to line up in Kerry against the likes of reigning champion Declan Boyle, Donagh Kelly and possibly Derek McGarrity.

Belfast Telegraph

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