Patient Breen steering his way to title glory
Craig Breen showed his intention to play the long game when he set the fifth fastest time on the qualifying stage ahead of the start of Rally Estonia.
With a 21 point lead at the top of the European championship, Circuit of Ireland winner Breen is aiming for a strong finish without taking undue risks on the ultra-fast gravel stages of the Baltic forests. He knows he cannot afford a repeat of the accident which cost him victory in the previous round in Belgium.
The former World S2000 from Waterford said: "I missed the chance to build a big cushion over Kajto (Kajetan Kajetanowicz) in Ypres but I really wanted the win there and I was prepared to push to the limit. But now I need the points to protect my lead."
Breen knows Kajetanowicz will be a threat in Estonia and the Pole demonstrated his pace by topping the qualifying stage times in his R5 Ford Fiesta, edging out two Estonian drivers, Martin Kangur in another Fiesta and Karl Kruda in a Citroen DS3.
Russian Alexey Lukyanuk was fourth fastest despite having switched from the R5 Fiesta he drove on the Circuit of Ireland to a production Mitsubishi Evo. Breen played it safe to take fifth place in his Peugeot Academy 208 T16.
After a spectator stage in Tartu last night the rally begins in earnest this morning.