Thu 20 Apr 2023

Lindholm recalls happy Breen memories as ERC graduates line up in Croatia

Several drivers with past or present experience in the FIA European Rally Championship will be in action on this week’s Croatia Rally with Emil Lindholm using the build-up to the event to remember Craig Breen.

Lindholm and Breen both competed under the Team MRF Tyres banner during the 2020 ERC season, albeit with Škoda and Hyundai power respectively.

Breen tragically passed away following an accident during a private test for the Croatia Rally seven days ago and Lindholm, the reigning WRC2 champion, was keen to highlight the role that Breen played in his career development.

“I like this rally, but this week has not been easy when one of the most liked characters of the service park is absent,” said Lindholm, who used his ERC campaign to build his experience before mounting his ultimately successful WRC2 title bid in 2022. “I was happy to know Craig, we did a few rallies in the same team in the ERC and I'm always grateful for the all the help he gave. This weekend we will rally for him.”

Lindholm forms part of the Toksport WRT entry in Croatia. It’s a team with significant ERC pedigree having guided Chris Ingram and Andreas Mikkelsen to the prestigious European crown in 2019 and 2021. Nikolay Gryazin, who took the Rally2-based Junior ERC title in 2018, also competes for Toksport in the WRC.

The Croatia Rally marks the second WRC2 outing of 2023 for Erik Cais, who will undertake a programme of ERC events during the year. Georg Linnamaë will also be competing in Croatia this week having scored a podium finish on the ERC season-opening Rally Serras de Fafe, Felgueiras, Boticas, Vieira do Minho e Cabeceiras de Basto.

Esapekka Lappi (2014) and Armin Kremer (2001) are the two European champions on the Croatia Rally entry list, while Fabio Schwarz, son of 1996 ERC winner Armin, will be making his WRC debut on the Zagreb event aged 18.

Laurent Pellier, the Junior ERC champion from 2022, continues his Junior WRC campaign in a Ford Fiesta Rally3.

The Croatia Rally begins with the first of 20 stages tomorrow (Friday), while Rally Islas Canarias hosts round two of the 2023 ERC season from 4 - 6 May.

Latvia
Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Italy
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Hungary
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM