WRC Rally Portugal: Irish Interest
Craig Breen and Paul Nagle lead the Irish charge on WRC Rally de Portugal. The M-Sport Ford World Rally Team crew currently lie third in the Championship standings
A staggering 12 Motorsport Ireland licence holders will take part in this weekend's Rally de Portugal, the fourth round of the 2022 FIA World Rally Championship.
Craig Breen and Paul Nagle will be looking to build on their steady start to the season which currently sees them lie third in the Championship. While Breen hasn't competed on this event since 2018, it's a rally he is comfortable with and he'll be looking to help the M-Sport Ford World Rally Team move up the manufacturers standings as they currently trail rivals Toyota and Hyundai.
Aaron Johnston is another Irish representative in the top Rally1 category with his Japanese driver Takamoto Katsuta in a Toyota Yaris. Katsuta finished fourth on this event last year and is capable of matching that result again.
Motorsport Ireland Rally Academy drivers Josh McErlean and William Creighton continue their rescpective campaigns in Portugal. McErlean will compete in the WRC2 class in a Hyundai i20 N Rally2, while Creighton is contesting both the Junior WRC and WRC3 categories in a Ford Fiesta Rally3. McErlean will be partered by James Fulton while Liam Regan will call the notes for Creighton. There's further Irish interest in the Junior WRC category with Brian Hoy navigating for Championship leader Jon Armstrong.
Joining Josh McErlean in the PCRS camp for the weekend in a brace of Hyundai i20N Rally 2's are the all Irish pairings of Paul Rowley/Andy Hayes and Pauric Duffy/Jeff Case. Rowley will be making his debut at this level having largely competed in America for the past few season while Duffy will be undertaking his fifth WRC event and will be looking to improve on the 29th place finish on this event last year.