Hyundai Motorsport WRC driver Hayden Paddon previews Rally Argentina……..
We have arrived in Argentina and are ready for round five of the championship with this weekend’s rally. We made some good memories here last year, so it’s great to return to a happy hunting ground where we hope to get things back on track. Click the link below to check out my take as we make the final preparations for Rally Argentina.
After the last round in Corsica, it was nice to get back to NZ for ten days over Easter, where we enjoyed some extra training time and some sponsor events. When there are events outside Europe, we try to take the chance to go via NZ when we can, as time at home is quite limited these days… and nothing beats New Zealand! As well as an increased training program and study time for Argentina, I also took part in the 125km Lake Hawea Epic mountain bike race which I really enjoyed.
This year’s Rally Argentina is 80% the same as last year, with just one new stage on each day. This is good for us as we were competitive on these stages last year and have some good data we can refer to. Also being back on gravel is a confidence booster for us – so we hope all of this will help us to have a strong event. There will be no holding back and we will be giving it everything. It only takes one good result to build some momentum and now would be a great time to kick start our year.
Argentina is also renowned for being one of the roughest rallies on the calendar – particularly the Sunday stages which make up one of the hardest final days of the championship. The stages are generally quite fast, with some of the Saturday stages being a bit smoother, faster and more flowing.
We completed our Argentina test before Rally Corsica last month and while we’re still chasing that perfect feeling for my driving style with the car setup, we have made some small improvements. Make sure you catch the action live on TVNZ Duke on Sunday at 4am (or see the replay at 2pm), and then again live on Monday at 3am. You can also watch everything On Demand here.
On Tuesday we did our recce and saw the condition of the stages for the first time. Not only is it key to get some good pace notes together from the recce, it was also great to evaluate the conditions and put together a strong rally plan.
As always, you can follow our progress at www.paddonspack.co.nz. Also this weekend is round two of the NZ Rally Championship in Whangarei, where our team Paddon Rallysport and the Hyundai NZ Rally team will be competing. You can follow the progress of that rally at www.chrissport.kiwi.