Hayden Paddon, the only New Zealander competing in the World Rally Championship (WRC), is set to feature alongside Winger Hyundai at New Zealand’s largest motor sport and automotive show, the CRC Speedshow, held on 18 and 19 July in Auckland.
Paddon is New Zealand’s first-ever driver to compete full-time in the WRC and is currently in his second season with the Hyundai Motorsport team. Originally from Geraldine, the popular rally driver has an impressive string of results and records under his belt nationally and internationally as a three-time New Zealand Rally Champion and the 2011 Production World Rally Champion.
Ross Prevette, managing director of CRC Speedshow, said: “It is just fantastic to confirm that Hayden Paddon and Winger Hyundai will be coming to the show for the first time this year. We’re ecstatic to have a driver of Hayden’s calibre as our special guest at the show and know that motorsport fans will welcome the opportunity to meet the Kiwi rally driver we all love to support as he strives to be the first ever World Rally Champion from the Southern Hemisphere.”
Prevette adds: “We have a big list of activities for Hayden to do while he’s at the show, including some one-on-one challenges with show visitors so I’m sure it will be a lot of fun for everyone and provide a unique opportunity to chat to one of the rally world’s best competitors.”
Visitors to the CRC Speedshow will have the chance to meet Paddon several times during the event held at the ASB Showgrounds in Greenlane, and watch him race in the Right Karts Celebrity Charity Kart Challenge against some of New Zealand’s other top racing stars including Michael Pickens, Andrew Stroud and Andre Heimgartner.
Taking time out of his hectic WRC schedule, Paddon will have just contested Rally Poland in his Hyundai Mobis World Rally Team Hyundai i20 WRC world rally car before making the trip back to New Zealand specifically for CRC Speedshow where he looks forward to meeting fans and motorsport enthusiasts and sharing some of his stories from the WRC.
Paddon says: “We always love returning home to New Zealand, and in particular to this year be involved with the CRC Speedshow is something I’m really looking forward to. It’s something that has never quite fit in with our schedule in the past, but thanks to Hyundai, we can make it back and look forward to interacting with our fans.”
Grant Vincent, dealer principal of Winger Hyundai, a key partner of Paddon’s alongside Hyundai New Zealand and the other Hyundai dealerships in New Zealand, is also delighted Paddon can fly the Hyundai flag in front of the tens of thousands of CRC Speedshow visitors. Their focus is all about Kiwi families and giving them a day out to remember.
Vincent comments: “As a New Zealand owned and operated brand, we’re proud to support Hayden in his international competition and bringing him home to New Zealand to meet his local supporters at the CRC Speedshow. It’s also our first time at the show and we’re really excited to be there, especially with the wide range of activities we have lined up.
“Our activities also have a strong family focus so it’ll be great to see how our younger fans go against Hayden. There are lots of prizes up for grabs too so there will definitely be something for the whole family.”
More information about the 2015 CRC Speedshow is available from the event’s website, www.speedshow.co.nz.