Citroen Racing’s Craig Breen goes into the final day of the opening World Rally Championship event, the Rallye Monte Carlo in fourth place overall following an incredible day on Saturday for the Waterford native who has be competing in the WRC opener in the old generation DS3 WRC.
Speaking following day 3 of the rally which sees the Irishman just behind Jari Matti Latvala fighting for a podium, Breen commented by saying:
It’s been an incredible day for us. We had some really nice stage times in the morning on the snow and ice, but we couldn’t match the pace of the 2017 WRCs on tarmac. And now we find ourselves in fourth position: it’s surprising and fantastic! Well done to the team, the guys are working really hard and my ice-note crew are doing an amazing job. And now on to Monaco!
Kris Meeke was forced to retire from the rally following a collision on his to Monte Carlo for the final stage of the event and speaking following his day, the Northern Irishman stated:
It was good to be back in the rally today. We spent the day learning. It was a bit difficult to get the confidence back and find the right pace in these conditions. The last stage was drier and we managed to find some decent speed. We gathered a lot of information, so we’ve now got some work to do to analyse all of that and make progress. Although I could no longer aim for a good overall result, I’m very disappointed not be able to contest the final leg. The Col de Turini is always one of the highlights of the season.
Stephane Lefebvre goes into the final day of the rally just outside a place in the top ten in 11th and speaking following Saturday’s action, he commented by saying:
Today was pretty tough, especially on the snow, where I struggled to feel confident. I constantly had the feeling that I was almost about to go off. I’d have loved to set a better time on SS13, but I stalled at the start of the stage and that cost me a few seconds. Tomorrow’s stages are more familiar and I hope the weather conditions will be a little milder!
Citroen Racing Team Principal Yves Matton commented by saying:
We thought we had managed to do the main thing, with our three crews still in the race before the final road section to Monaco. In the C3 WRCs, Kris Meeke and Stéphane Lefebvre tested different set-ups with some useful feedback. We’ve only just started to use the car and the miles covered will help us to add to our knowledge, both with regard to the next few rallies and the 2018 Rallye Monte-Carlo. After the efforts made, it’s tough to see Kris retire for such a stupid reason. Meanwhile, Craig Breen has continued with his very good race, showing consistency and speed in all of the conditions. The fact that he is only just shy of the podium places is further confirmation of the improvement we saw him make throughout last season.