Craig Breen was firmly on course for a Rally Hungary podium finish for Team MRF Tyres only for a mechanical failure to force him to retire his Hyundai i20 R5 on SS12 while running in second place.
The Irishman, a five-time winner in the FIA European Rally Championship, took two fastest stage times on the sealed-surface event, but his strong run alongside fellow Irishman Paul Nagle wasn’t to last.
He explained what went wrong: “Unfortunately, a few kilometres from the end of the third stage of the loop we had an engine failure. There was little warning and I think by the time the warning came, the damage [was] already done. There was not a whole lot more that we could do. Today was very simple, just to bring it home. That was the task. We took it very easy over the stages.
“It’s really disappointing considering all the work that everybody has done, but it is life unfortunately. The progress of MRF Tyres has definitely been impressive. We’ve been we’ve been trying very, very hard and all the tests in the meantime to make tyre more and more competitive and we’re definitely making big improvements and we are going to try and make it even better in the future.”