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'I'm absolutely on top of the world' - Ireland's Craig Breen claims runner-up spot in Rally Sweden

The Slieverue native was greeted by his mother at the finish line after a career-best this afternoon.

Breen and Martin celebrating their achievement.
Breen and Martin celebrating their achievement.
Image: Twitter/Craig_Breen

CRAIG BREEN HAS produced the best-ever result by a driver from the Republic of Ireland on a WRC (World Rally Championship) event — finishing second overall at Rally Sweden.

Along with co-driver Scott Martin, the Citroen C3 man went into the final three stages in the runner-up spot, and they did enough on Sunday to remain there just behind winner Thierry Neuville, who won by 19.8 seconds.

It’s the finest achievement of 28-year-old Breen’s career, bettering his third at Rally Finland in 2016.

There were emotional scenes at the finish line as the Sliverue native was met by his mother.

“I’m not going to cry this time,” Breen said. “Awesome, I’m absolutely on top of the world. It was a really big stepping stone this weekend, we’re really started to put the whole package together.

I have to thank every single person that’s around me — not only this man [Scott Martin], all the engineers, my family, my friends… everybody. They’ve stuck with me this past year when it’s been difficult. The boys have made this thing work, so it’s a pure pleasure right now.

He added: “Finally, we did. I’m over the moon. We had a really nice day, we held off the fight from Andreas [ ] and we had some really good times in the morning. That allowed us to have cruise to finish up in second.

“Thanks for all the messages for support during the weekend.”

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Ben Blake

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