WRC

Craig Breen lands Rally GB drive with Hyundai

Craig Breen will be in a Hyundai for Rally GB. The Irishman made his first WRC start for the Korean squad in Finland recently after being dropped by Citroën for 2019 after he had won a late deal to contest Rally Finland in the third i20 Coupe. And he was most impressive, fighting for a top five finish before dropping to seventh so that team-mate and 2019 title contender Thierry Neuville's could finish fifth. 

Now team sources confirm that the Hyundai line-up for Rally GB will be Neuville, Breen and Andreas Mikkelsen. Breen is also thought to be in the frame for more outings with Hyundai this year, and a possible WRC seat next season. Team boss Andrea Adamo stopped short of confirming a deal was done for Breen to contest Rally GB but said he had "made a plan" and that there was "potential" for future outings.

"I have no contract with Craig,” said Adamo after Finland. “But yes, there is a potential opportunity moving forward. I already have in my mind what I would like to do. I made a plan about who goes where and there was a name similar to his in there - he deserves it."

Asked if Breen had opened the door for a 2020 deal, Adamo replied: "He has shown he has the pace and he's smart enough to work in a works team. He is good in testing and I see just good things out of this event together. In life there are trains passing by, if you are smart you jump on - if you are the fool then you put them in the dustbin. I think in Finland, in the last few days, we have seen who is smart and who is not."

Breen, whose Finland outing with co-driver Paul Nagle was his first in a latest-generation World Rally Car, said his performance "surpassed my expectations".

"My whole plan before rally was to be in position to have to slow down and let somebody by,” added Breen. “That's all I could target and that's exactly how it panned out. I know it's an odd thing to say and it's probably the only time in my career I'll be happy to slow down for somebody, but that's the truth. It was the first event for me and Paul in the big car and know it can only get better from here. I'm delighted."

Hyundai confirmed on Tuesday that Neuville, Andreas Mikkelsen, and Dani Sordo will contest the next WRC round, Rally Germany, in later this month.