Hayden Paddon previews this weekends Rally Germany……
Some ask why is it difficult for us to be as competitive on tarmac as we are on gravel; why don’t we just drive faster? Well, in fact, it’s sometimes the opposite problem – that we’re trying to drive too fast. To be fast on tarmac, it’s about balancing the fine line between driving too slow and driving too fast. That’s a line that I’m still trying to discover, but I’m sure I will. From a confidence point of view, it’s always more difficult on tarmac when the transition of grip level is instant – and sometimes hard to react to. At least on gravel the grip changes are constant, and you can feel it better through the chassis and suspension. However, the more miles we do, the more this ability to gauge is becoming more natural. We will build on that again this weekend.
Weather always plays a key role here, especially when it rains (not if!) We don’t have a proper rain tyre as such, just a softer compound tyre that provides more grip. This is where the job of our gravel crew becomes really important, as they note the corners/sections that have changed since our recce and report back to us before each stage. We’re lucky to have the best in the business making up our gravel crew – Australian rally driver and friend Brendan Reeves, who has John sitting in with him.
We’re also pleased to announce that Abbie McKinlay won our Facebook competition for a trip for two to Rally Australia. We still have a couple of seats remaining on our VIP tour ($1,990 double/twin or $2,490 single) including all accommodation (four days at a resort), bus transfers, a guided tour throughout the rally, behind the scenes access, rally passes and merchandise, group functions and meals (flights not included). If you’d like more info or to make a booking, please email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Finally, I have an exciting opportunity for Paddon’s Pack members coming up next month – a rally ride with me at the iconic Ashley Forest Rally Sprint on September 16 and 17, in Rangiora, Canterbury. These will be exclusive, members only Paddon’s Pack rally ride packages. Details to follow after Rally Germany, so stay tuned!
Thanks for your support guys. We look forward to keeping you posted throughout the rally.