Paddon grateful for quick i20 turnaround
Hyundai driver Hayden Paddon has praised the team’s efforts in building a new i20 WRC from scratch in just seven days after his car was lost to a Rally of Portugal fire last month.
Kevin Abbring’s car wasn’t entered on the final day in Portugal – that day was spent repreparing it for Sardinia, buying the Frankfurt-based team more time ahead of the job of building a New Generation i20 from scratch.
Paddon said: “I’d like to thank everyone in the team for getting our car ready for us. Let’s hope we can repay those efforts with a positive result.”
Team principal Michel Nandan added: “With just two weeks between the final day of Portugal and [the cars] leaving for Sardinia, it has been hard work to build a New Generation i20 WRC but one which everyone has come together to achieve.
“We have some great memories from last year’s double podium (Paddon second, Thierry Neuville third) in Sardinia. We look forward to restoring the positive momentum created by our best-ever season start – and hopefully a return to the podium.”
Paddon scored his first world championship podium on the Italian island last year, having led for much of the first half of the rally. He broke his WRC duck in Argentina in April and is determined not to let his fiery Portuguese shunt get in the way of his progression. He said: “We had a hard weekend in Portugal, but the accident doesn’t dent the confidence at all – in fact we are more determined than ever to come back fighting in Sardinia.”