From the rain soaked asphalt of Corsica Peugeot Rally Academy driver Craig Breen goes to the sun drenched gravel of Greece to fight for the European Championship title this weekend. The SEAJETS Acropolis Rally (10-11 October) is where he and the Peugeot 208T16 took their maiden ERC wins back in March 2014. Although Craig’s season long rival Kajeta Kajetanowicz now holds a 62 point lead the championship is far from over and Craig will be very much hoping that lightning can strike twice in the land of the gods to put him back in contention. Craig had a brilliant start to the year, winning three events in a row that gave him a 21-point lead mid-season. Since then a run of bad luck as well as his non-entry on the Cyprus Rally has resulted in him slipping behind Kajetanowicz but with 78 points still up for grabs, a good run in Greece could get his title bid back on track.
Along with a later date this year sees a change in location to Athens as well as a more compact two day format adding to the challenge. The qualifying where drivers battle it out for the chance to be the first to choose their road order for leg one only takes place on Saturday morning followed by the selection ceremony immediately afterwards. Later on after the ceremonial start at 3pm it’s straight into action for two stages broken by a service halt in Loutraki, the first of which is a massive 43.41km. Day two will have seven stages through the punishing terrain and with a single mid-day service halt it will be a case of risk management for all the crews to ensure they make it back to the finish ramp that evening. Speaking to www.fiaerc.com before departing for his back to back events Craig said “Last year was amazing. To go there with a brand new car and to win on its debut was a dream come true. It really proved that the Peugeot 208T16 is a winner. I head to Greece with a lot of confidence knowing our speed last year, and hopefully some of the stages will be the same. Being realistic, we need a win there to keep our championship hopes alive, so we will be doing all in our power to do that!”