The last two weeks since Rally Sardegna have seemed to have flown by and to be honest we haven’t had much time to savor the result. If anything the result has made us dig deeper to help achieve similar results in the future.
Once the whirlwind of all the media commitments had calmed down after Italy, it was straight into some tarmac development testing in France. Then it was home for 1 day before heading to Finland where we conducted our Rally Finland test – as well as also testing the new generation i20. We had a really good test and got some good data not only for Finland, but also for this weeks Poland rally.
John and I have prepared as well as we can for this event – further refining our pacenote system, studying our data/information from last years events and studying some onboard footage. However, this years event includes 90% new stages or new configuration, meaning we and everyone else will start from scratch with the pacenotes on recce starting today.
Poland is a rally we enjoy and is actually one of the fastest events on the calendar. For us, the faster the better. On fast events like this the gaps between each driver is smaller and attrition rate lower – so to be in the top 5 is no easy task. We will take the same approach as Sardegna, stay calm and do our own thing. I trust in the preparation we have done and will let things naturally happen. Also with every stage and every rally we are getting more and more comfortable in the car and while we are always learning, I feel we are now getting to a point where we can be more consistently fast.
Unlike most other gravel rallys, this rally road position is not as advantageous being further down the order. The softer/sandier road surface means with every passing of a car, the road chews up, becoming softer/slower and eventually cutting up. Of course there are also some parts that sweep and these will be the sections that we target to try and gain some time with our starting position of 9 (our championship position).
Also, if you are not aware, the new WRC+ webpage https://plus.wrc.com is a hugely valuable tool for fans and competitors. For 4.99 euro per month or 49.99 euro per year you can have access to live TV coverage streamed online, all drivers onboards from every stage of each rally, replay highlights and review shows and even track each car during events via the GPS tracking. If you haven’t already, check it out – you wont be disappointed.
Thanks for all your ongoing support – like always you can find all the links to follow us this weekend at www.haydenpaddon.com.