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Paddon improves to fourth in Spain

NZ NewswireNZ Newswire 15/10/2016
Hayden Paddon © Getty images Hayden Paddon

Hayden Paddon is hoping to secure a podium finish at the Rally of Catalunya in Spain after improving one place to fifth on the second full day.

Kiwi driver Paddon embraced the shift from gravel to asphalt surfaces, finishing in the top seven in all eight stages on Saturday, including second on the short special stage.

Boasting improved performance from the previous day, he leapfrogged British driver Kris Meeke to ensure the Hyundai team hold positions two, three and four overall behind French leader Sebastian Ogier in a Volkswagen.

Spanish driver Dani Sordo is just five seconds behind three-time defending world champion Ogier, who is more than a minute clear of Belgian Thierry Neuville and Paddon.

The 16sec gap to Neuville is in the sights of Paddon heading into four mid-size stages which conclude the rally on Sunday.

"It may not sound like much, but chasing someone like Thierry on this surface is a big mountain to climb. But we won't give up," he said.

Paddon is fourth on the drivers' standings with two rounds remaining after this week.

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