WATERFORD rally driver Craig Breen is the SWRC (Super 2000 World Rally Championship) champion, after taking the title in style on the final day of World Rally Spain.
IT'S a second consecutive world rally title for the 22-year-old, after he won the inaugural FIA WRC Academy Championship 12 months ago. In June, Breen suffered a tragedy when his best friend and former co-driver Gareth Roberts was killed in an accident on the IRC Rally, Targa Florio.
Breen made a comeback at the World Rally Finland in August and, in the closing three SWRC rounds (Wales Rally GB, World Rally France and World Rally Spain) of the season, stamped his authority on the championship by claiming a hat-trick of wins.
This weekend, he completed World Rally Spain in sixth overall, equalling Sebastien Ogier's record for the highest overall finish for an S2000 car in the 2012 Championship.
The finale to the SWRC category was expected to be a three-way battle between championship leader Breen (93 points), PG Andersson (91 points) from Sweden and Yazeed Al Rajhi (73 points) from Saudi Arabia. As it turned out, it was a showdown between Breen and Proton Motorsport ace Andersson, with the Irish driver prevailing.