Breen on form to claim victory in Latvia

victory in Lativa for Craig Breen with his Peugeot 208 T16
victory in Lativa for Craig Breen with his Peugeot 208 T16

Craig Breen won the second round of the FIA European Rally Championship in Latvia at the wheel of a Peugeot 208 T16 alongside co-driver Scott Martin.

The Irish driver moved in front on stage two and did not put a wheel wrong there after to take his second win in this series and for him a third visit to the podium in Latvia.

Breen faced very difficult driving conditions caused by snow showers and at the conclusion of the event he stated, “It is awesome, it has been a rally of attrition but when I was pushing I was only once beaten on a stage by 0.7 seconds so I always had the speed. This is a great confidence boost for my home event at Easter, the Circuit of Ireland Rally.

Meanwhile on the home front the 2015 Clonakilty Black Pudding Tarmac Rally Championship got into gear with the Galway International Rally which saw a first international victory for Donagh Kelly at the wheel of a Ford Focus WRC.

One of the outstanding drives of the weekend came from Eugene Donnelly back in the sport after a lay off and he fought his way through the field at the wheel of a Mini WRC to claim second overall.

Third place went to Sam Moffett driving a Fiesta WRC and for the reigning champion disappointment, Declan Boyle led the opening day with his Subaru WRC but he incurred a three minute penalty and eventually he finished fifth overall.

Amongst the leading retirements was Fermanagh’s Garry Jennings, an off with his Subaru WRC which saw his challenge end.

Steven Kane and co-drivers Guy Smith and Matt Bell finished fourth for Bentley in the famous Bathurst 12 Hour Race in Australia. They led for the final hour of the race, losing out with a mere four minutes to go as a Nissan swept past and into the lead.

“We came here with an ambition to race hard and well, and we certainly did that. We got the setup of our car right and showed great pace throughout the twelve hours, and to finish such a race less than four seconds from the winner is no mean feat.

Matt was phenomenal in the last hour to hold on for as long as he did, and the third-in-class trophy is a small consolation. We can use what we have learnt here to help with our Blancpain campaign this year, and we can not wait to get started,” commented the Ulster driver.

The British Touring Car Championship has announced its largest ever television deal in North America, after agreeing a multi-year contract which will see the championship broadcast on the giant CBS Sports Network to sixty plus million households across the US and Canada.

A one-hour BTCC highlights programme will be screened on CBSSN in a prime time (Eastern time) slot on Wednesdays, ten days after each event and will then re-air during prime time (Pacific time) soon after.