Craig Breen shines on TitansRX debut

Craig Breen joined the TitansRX field for the second round of the season in Essay and instantly impressed with his speed and ‚elbows out‘ driving style.

The Irishman arrived at the track hours after winning the Ypres Rally and had very little sleep before heading out on track. What’s more, the World Rally Championship podium finisher had never taken part in a rallycross race before, and wasn’t sure what to expect.

„It was a bit hectic alright,“ he joked at the end of an intense day of racing. „I had no expectations of what rallycross was going to be all about but it definitely surpassed my idea of how much contact there would be.“

„[But] I enjoyed it, it was good fun. It was a nice way to wind down a little bit after the rally over the last few days, I really enjoyed myself.“

Breen was thrown right in at the deep end, but put in a strong performance right away, even topping Q2, before going on to qualify for the final where he briefly ran in the podium positions. It was the intense nature of TitansRX competition that Breen credits with keeping him going after his Ypres Rally triumph.

„Once the adrenaline gets going there’s a bit of a race on … I think that’s kept me awake most of today,“ he said. „I was lucky in some of my heats I managed to get a bit of a breakaway and again in the semi-final I managed to get a breakaway and obviously our speed is quite nice that we’re able to lead from the front and not have any dramas from behind, but definitely if you get caught up in the pack then it’s very difficult to do anything without making some contact so it’s just the way it is.“

Breen’s pace was impressive, but he wasn’t the only rally driver to set the timesheets alight during the weekend, with fellow rally drivers Hayden Paddon and Tamara Molinaro also putting in strong performances over the weekend. Breen says although they all lack proper ‚racing‘ experience, the versatility need to compete on the stages helps them adapt to the mixed surfaces of rallycross courses.

„I think rally drivers can probably adapt better on a circuit like this, it feels a bit like a rally stage and I know Tammy has obviously done some driving on tracks like this before so I knew that she would be fast,“ he said. „Hayden is a very well accomplished driver and okay, I was an unknown quantity, I didn’t really know what to expect coming here but it did surpass my expectations I have to say.“

„I think we’ve put in a fair effort. I think I did a reasonably enough effort for my first time but I think I have a far way to go to be a true rallycross driver.“

Breen is set to compete in the majority of the remaining TitansRX events this year and with his first event now in the books, he’s looking to build upon it going forward and keep challenging at the sharp end of the field.

„I don’t know what we can do with regards to series points or if we can manage to win a race but I think definitely the speed we have here given the very, very short amount of time I had in the car, I think I can definitely fight to win some races and I’m looking forward to that.“

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