BREEN SIGNS FOR MANOR MOTORSPORT IN F3 EUROSERIES!
Dundalk's Niall Breen, who finished fifth in his rookie British Formula 3 season, announced in Dublin today that he has signed with top Formula 3 Euroseries team, Manor Motorsport, for the 2008 season.
Breen has been setting new standards for Irish drivers this year, having taken a rookie victory in the British Formula 3 Championship with Carlin Motorsport at Snetterton in June, the first Irish driver to win a race since Michael Keohane in April 2002. He also took four runner-up positions at Donington Park, Bucharest, Thruxton and Croft during the course of the year, finishing in a fine fifth place with 145 points. He also competed in the Macau street circuit in China last month and finished 10th in the qualifier before being taken out in the main race.
Breen, 21, said: "I've had an extremely good rookie season in the British Formula 3 Championship and I'm certain I can be very competitive in the Formula 3 Euroseries with Manor Motorsport next year. With a race win and four second places during the year, I'd like to thank Carlin Motorsport and my engineer, Jimmy Goodwin, for giving me that opportunity."
He continued: "Now I'm really looking forward to racing in Europe - it'll be a new challenge to learn the new circuits which will stand me in good stead for the future. We'll have the new Mercedes-powered Dallara F308 chassis and I'll be testing it on December 14 at Pembrey. My new engineer, Pete Sliwinski, is very experienced and we got on well at the initial test I did in October with the team. I'm confident we'll be winning races in '08."
John Booth, boss of Yorkshire-based Manor Motorsport, commented: "I've been watching Niall for two or three years, since he was in the Formula BMW UK series and won the title in 2006. I'm delighted to have him in the team and pleased that he's had the courage to step up to the Euroseries as it would have been easier for him to succeed in the British F3 Championship. The Euroseries is much tougher and I'm sure he's going to win races in his first year."
Breen put himself firmly in motorsport's history books by dominating the 2006 Formula BMW UK Championship, clocking up nine wins to become the top UK series race winner of all time as he finished on the podium 16 times in 20 races.
The Dundalk driver, who was announced in third place today for the Dunlop Motorsport Ireland Young Driver of the Year behind Niall Quinn and Peter Dempsey, will be testing with Manor Motorsport at the end of February in Spain before the first race of the season in Hockenheim, Germany on April 12/13.