Hayden Paddon has been airlifted to hospital for checks after crashing out of Rally Portugal this afternoon.
The Kiwi suffered back pain following his accident on the second run at the Ponte de Lima test. He has been taken to hospital in Porto as a precaution. His co-driver, Briton Seb Marshall is uninjured.
Hyundai’s Alain Penasse explained the incident which happened just over a mile into the day’s final gravel test.
He told Motorsport.com: “In a right corner Hayden tried to avoid a stone on the inside of the corner. He went to the outside of the corner and went to the ditch. The ditch was ending and the car hit the end of the ditch with a strong impact on Hayden’s side.
“They both came out of the car themselves, then Hayden started to have some lower back pain, so they decided to ask for a doctor. The ambulance came [into the stage], it took them back to the start and Hayden was airlifted to the hospital in Porto where they are doing a check-up.”
If Paddon recovers, and is ready to re-start the event on Saturday, it remains to be seen what damage his i20 Coupe WRC has sustained.