Craig Breen was named International Driver of the Year on Tuesday at the Dunlop Motorsport Ireland Champions of Irish Motorsport Awards in Dublin.
Breen secured his second successive world title last month when he won the S2000 category of the World Rally Championship following his victory in the WRC Academy in 2011.
Breen was presented with the Manley Memorial Trophy at the ceremony and reflected on what has been a hugely successful but also extremely emotional year after he lost his best friend and co-driver, Gareth Roberts, during a tragic accident in June.
“Winning this trophy twelve months ago was a huge privilege and now to win it for a second time is unbelievable. It has been a difficult year but to finally secure the [SWRC] championship in Spain was justification of my decision to continue,” Breen remarked.
“I want to thank Motorsport Ireland and particularly Joe Corcoran, Alex Sinclair and James Coleman for their support throughout the year.
“In the aftermath of the accident it took some time to decide on my next step but after making the decision to continue, I knew it was the correct one. I love every minute of what I do and it's times like this that I can look back on in years to come.
“The second half of the season has been difficult at times but to come back and win three rounds out of four in the SWRC has been very rewarding.
“I want to again thank everyone who supported me, it would not have been possible without you.”