SAINTéLOC IRC Racing Junior Team to assault the Intercontinental Rally Challenge. The SAINTéLOC Racing program takes on another dimension this season with a two car team of Peugeot 207 S2000’s for the IRC with two promising young rally drivers, Irishman Craig Breen and Frenchman Mathieu Arzeno and with backing from Peugeot Sport the Etienne team will also bring in third driver, Florian Gonon for three rallies.
In addition to its program in France Rally Championship and Citroen Racing Trophy, SAINTéLOC Racing will also commit to the Intercontinental Rally Challenge, IRC SAINTéLOC under the name Junior Team with the support of Peugeot Sport, which will delegate an engineer on every practice session and each event. This international campaign will begin in Ireland and will continue in Corsica, Hungary, Belgium, Czech Republic and Italy.
“We managed to set up an IRC program for two promising young rally drivers, with the support of Peugeot Sport. The IRC SAINTéLOC Junior Team is born.” said Sebastian Chetail, “I really believe in these two young talents. I was blown away by the performance of Craig Breen in the Rally of Catalonia last year. As for Mathieu Arzeno, I know his speed as he drove in the Citroën Racing Trophy last year with us. Florian Gonon also joins the team on three events and I am sure he will be fighting for a podium place quickly, given his performance last season in Group N.”
Craig Breen, winner of the 2011 WRC Academy will begin working with the Junior Team IRC SAINTéLOC on his home event, the Circuit of Ireland Rally. This will be followed by Corsica, then Hungary and Ypres. “I’m really pleased that all our efforts finally pay for some time.” says Craig, “It’s a great opportunity to work with the Peugeot Sport and a high level team as SAINTéLOC. I will do my best to demonstrate the potential of the Peugeot 207 S2000 and SAINTéLOC Junior Team. We have a lot of work, but I really hope to be able to fight for the podium. Everything is designed to do well.”
The second driver in the team is Mathieu Arzeno. Mathieu will be counting on this opportunity to continue its rise in rallying and the Frenchman will start four rallies at least, Ireland, Corsica, Hungary and Ypres. “I am very delighted that we managed to get this program with Sebastien Chetail and SAINTéLOC.” said Mathiew, “I will drive on four events with the goal of learning the car on the Circuit of Ireland and then fight on the Tour de Corse as it’s an event that should suit me. I’m looking forward to it; it’s a very motivating program.”
Florian Gonon, runner-IRC Production Cup 2011, will join the IRC SAINTéLOC Junior Team for three events, the Ypres Rally, the Barum Rally Zlin and then San Remo. Florian has the objective to continue learning, driving an S2000. “After four successful years on board a Subarau Impreza, we are happy to move to the next level, with my co-pilot Sandra Alettaz. The Peugeot 207 S2000 is a car that has all the latest developments. We will have to learn many things, but we hope soon to play in the top 10 in the IRC. We look are looking forward to getting started.”
The SAINTéLOC Racing Junior Team will begin with a test session in France on the 20th of March, and then a second test session will be scheduled just before the Circuit of Ireland.