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WRC: Paddon Focuses on Mexico Event

Hayden Paddon is now turning his focus on the second WRC event of this year, Rally Guanajuato Mexico.


Earlier in February, Paddon garnered his career-best fifth place at Rally Sweden. He says that the experience in Sweden made him learn that no matter how bad things may be, all you need to do is to focus.


Paddon said: “It was a good learning exercise in that no matter how bad things may feel at the time, you just need to focus, put your head down, try not to make any mistakes and you never know what the end result may be.”


Speaking of the next competition in Mexico, he expressed his urge to go back on the gravel. However, he notes that his lack of experience might be the biggest challenge in the race as other competitors have gained a great deal of experience throughout the past competition.


Paddon said: “It will be good being back on the gravel, but our biggest challenge is that this will be our first time doing this event - an event that is relatively unchanged from year to year. Even though we did recce here last year, that familiarity which other competitors have with this route will be a hard gap to bridge.


“While we do have a base of notes to work with from last year's recce, it's a little difficult as we have not driven the notes at speed, so there is more work to do during recce this coming week to visualise speeds and lines, and translate that into our pace notes. Mexico often has a high attrition rate, so if we can push at a comfortable pace and avoid problems, then a good result could be on the cards.”


Nevertheless, Paddon adds that he does enjoy the roads there.


He said: “I do enjoy the nature of the roads here, a mix of fast and technical. The altitude of the route which takes us into the Sierra de Lobos and Sierra de Guanajuato mountains north and east of León to over 2700 metres above sea level is the biggest handicap though for all the cars, with up to 20 per cent power loss expected.”


Besides, between events, Paddon also spent a few days at Formula Medicine in Italy, training both his physical and mental aspects.


He said: “Particularly on the mental side, I have been developing some new techniques with the trainers to help me to hit that ‘sweet spot’.”


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