Hayden Paddon press release
Paddon running first PWRC competitor in Rally Australia
The first full day of competition in Rally Australia, the tenth round of this year’s FIA World Rally Championship, gets underway this morning (Friday) with New Zealand’s top rally driver Hayden Paddon first on the road among the production category competitors.
Paddon, from Geraldine, and Blenheim-based co-driver John Kennard came through Thursday night’s two circuits of the 3.77km super special stage at Coffs Harbour on the New South Wales coast in sixth place among the 14-strong production car field.
Earlier in the day Paddon nailed the quickest time on the short shakedown stage where competitors get their first official run in their rally cars on a stage similar to the main rally stages.
Midway through Thursday, Paddon commented: “Another good day with shakedown this morning. All is going well and the CR Properties/Placemakers Subaru feels great. It’s amazing to see all the Kiwi support we have here with all the Kiwi flags. It’s unreal!”
Paddon and Kennard are top seeds in the production car category, so start Friday’s first stage, Shipmans 1, immediately after the 12th-seeded WRC car, the John Cooper Works WRC Mini of Brazilian driver Daniel Oliveira.
Paddon’s start time of 9:08am (Australian Eastern Standard Time) sees the two-time New Zealand rally champion tackle 116.06km of competitive stages today. There are two repeated runs through three stages before two further runs on the Coffs Harbour super special stage from 6:30 this evening
Paddon and Kennard are leading the Production World Rally Championship standings going into this weekend’s Rally Australia and have potential to secure this year’s PWRC title with a solid run on this event. Paddon could make history with a win this weekend, as he’d become the first ever competitor from the Southern Hemisphere to win a world rally title.
A large tour party of Paddon RallySport supporters is at Rally Australia to cheer the 24-year-old and his team on.
Paddon appreciates the continued support he gets from his loyal partners, which include Subaru New Zealand, EDL Fasteners, CR Properties, Placemakers, Milwaukee, Racetech Seats, Castrol, Dunlop, Radio Sport, Radio Hauraki, Camerons Sea and Air Freight, Endless brakes, In-tune Automotive, All About Signs, Total Automotive, Reaction Racing, Raiseys Sport Nutrition, Chicane Racewear, RallyTours, Alto Lab, Pope Print, Granger Design, Bluebridge Ferry, 1 Group and Symtech Racing.