Craig Breen Foundation established

Hyundai Motosport, Hyundai Portugal, Hyundai Spain, Sports & You, Motorsport Ireland and FIA announced today the establishment of Craig Breen Foundation with the view of honoring the Irishman driver.

Craig Breen made his debut at the top level of World Rally Championship back in 2016 as Citroen Racing offered him a partial programme and he managed to take his maiden WRC podium at Rally Finland then. He extended his contract with the French team for two more years, but he lost his place over Sebastien Ogier and Esapekka Lappi in 2019, therefore he accepted Hyundai's offer to compete in a promotional event of WRC (Rally Estonia) and in two WRC rounds (Wales Rally GB, Rally Finland) four years ago. In 2020, he did two outings with the i20 Coupe WRC at the top tier, but his main campaign was focused on ERC series with the i20 R5. In 2021, the Alzenau-based team offered to Breen a five-rally campaign, as he shared the third car with Dani Sordo, and finished three times in the podium positions. A year later, M-Sport Ford approached him and both parties reached an agreement in which Breen would be the leading driver of the squad, but his results were not perfect as he was struggling with the Puma and did many mistakes. Despite the bad season he had with the Malcolm Wilson's team, Hyundai gave to him a second chance by providing to him a partial programme again. However, the life had different plans for him, as he was killed during his pre-event test with the i20N Rally1 in Croatia on April 13, and his death shocked the whole rally community. He proved by his performance at Rally Sweden last February that he had the skills and the talent to fight for the top places as he was on the battle for the win with Ott Tanak and Esapekka Lappi. After his passing away, Hyundai Motorsport honored him by presenting a special livery at Croatia Rally whereas Toyota, M-Sport Ford and every team on the paddock carried a memorial logo to their cars.

"We are pleased to announce the establishment of the Craig Breen Foundation", the statement says. 

"Hailing from Waterford and making it all the way to the pinnacle of the World Rally Championship with Hyundai Motorsport, Craig always held grassroots rallying close to his heart. 

"In 2023, he showed commitment to this passion by offering to provide both support and funding for the Irish J1000 Forestry Series which is aimed at 14-17-year-olds, starting out in the sport.

"The foundation aims to continue and build on the good work started by Craig in developing the path into top level rallying for young Irish competitors, while honouring his memory. 

"With the support of Hyundai Motorsport, Sports & You, Hyundai Portugal, Hyundai Spain, Motorsport Ireland and the FIA, the foundation has committed to support the J1000 Forestry Series for a minimum five-year period from 2024 onwards".

Read below the full statement:

Photo Credits: Hyundai

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