You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

Paddon positive despite Portugal setback

NZ Newswire logoNZ Newswire 22/05/2017

New Zealand driver Hayden Paddon is taking solace from some giant gains made before he was forced to pull out of the Rally of Portugal. © Massimo Bettiol/Getty Images New Zealand driver Hayden Paddon is taking solace from some giant gains made before he was forced to pull out of the Rally of Portugal. New Zealand driver Hayden Paddon is taking solace from some giant gains made before he was forced to pull out of the Rally of Portugal.

Paddon and his new British co-driver Sebastian Marshall were forced to sit out the final day on Sunday because of electrical problems followed by power steering woes over the two previous days.

It continued a season of frustration for the Hyundai driver, who drops one spot to eight overall after six of 13 rounds in the World Rally Championship.

However, unlike when similar problems have struck this season, Paddon is taking a positive slant on the week.

He won four stages, led momentarily, and felt some performance in his machine which had been lacking earlier in the campaign.

"While the result's disappointing with the technical difficulties we had that cost us any chances, it's still positive and pleasing to know we can be competitive," Paddon said.

"We had the speed here that we should have been fighting for the win, but nevertheless we were able to win some stages."

While his team-mates Thierry Neuville and Dani Sordo were a close second and third behind WRC leader Sebastien Ogier, Paddon almost felt like he had notched his own private victory.

With more of his favoured gravel rallies to follow, including the next-start Rally of Sardinia from June 9, Paddon feels prominent results aren't far away.

"Everything in the car's working really well and Seb did an amazing job in the car for the first time, absolutely faultless.

"This bodes well for the future. We know once our luck turns, that we've got the package to put forward a good challenge to start trying to win some rallies in the very near future."

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon