Craig Breen has won the latest round of the World Rally Championship Academy in Germany this weekend.
The Waterford driver finished 15.1 seconds ahead of Spanish driver Yeray Lemes in second place with Academy championship leader Egon Kaur finishing in eighth position.
The 21-year-old has now halved Estonian Kaur’s lead at the top of the Championship to just 26 points with two events left in the season.
Breen was in contention from the outset and was second after day one behind Lemes with the Spaniard holding a 32-second overnight advantage.
A mistake by Lemes on day two when he missed a junction gave Breen the chance he needed and he never let the lead slip for the rest of the event.
Breen finished second at the last event in Finland, but this was his first win of the season as he took 25 points for the win and an additional five points for five stage wins.
The victory in has put Breen firmly in contention for the WRC Academy title and the €500,000 prize with two events left.
“It’s difficult to describe the feeling in words. I was really determined to win here after the second place in Finland.
The car was absolutely perfect throughout the rally. To get a good haul of points was exactly what we wanted, but to win was even better, especially knowing we halved Egon (Kaur)’s lead. We’re looking forward to another Tarmac event now in France. I’m more than happy – I’m ecstatic,” Breen said after the event.
The next round of the World Rally Championship takes place in France from September 3-October 2.