It has seemed like a long time since Rally Australia, but its now finally time to get behind the wheel of our i20 WRC this weekend for Rally Catalunya. This mixed surface event (day 1 on gravel and day 2 and 3 on tarmac) has the best tarmac stages in the championship. With the fast, smooth and flowing roads resembling a race track in parts.
Following on from our previous events, we want to continue our progression and try and get closer to our team mates and leaders again. However, this event will be tougher for us, as it will be our first time on tarmac this year, compared to the others who had both Germany and France rallies as warm ups. But no excuses, we had a good test last week and the feeling with the new Michelin tyre means the car slides around more – is good. Also day 1 stages on the gravel are quite loose, so our low starting position on Friday morning should help us to try and get in a good position and we now have to work hard to make sure we make the most of this advantage.
With both our team mates, Thierry and local hero Dani Sordo being somewhat tarmac specialists, we have the ultimate benchmark for this event and we certainly hope we can get close on some stages. I really enjoy the stages, and the expected dry weather will mean that grip levels will be high.
We have just completed 3 runs at shakedown and this evening we head to Barcelona for a spectacular super special stage right in the middle of one of Spain’s biggest city’s. Before the rally properly starts Friday morning. As always you can keep up to date with our progress throughout the weekend on our facebook or twitter pages. You can find all the appropriate links to these pages plus all the live results/updates on our homepage, www.haydenpaddon.com.
We will touch base again after the event. Thanks for all the support we have had leading up to this event and I promise you we will be giving it our best shot.