Kiwi WRC rally duo Hayden Paddon and John Kennard have pushed on during Saturday’s special stages at Rally Sweden to consolidate their second position. Paddon and Kennard managed to lessen the margin to rally leader Sebastien Ogier from the morning’s 32.4 sec margin to 17.1 sec by end of day – after SS 12, when the road conditions were in their favour, they got the margin to Ogier down to just 8.8 sec. Meanwhile they’ve also have built a buffer against chasing competitors and finished the shortened Saturday route with a 25.2 sec lead over Mads Ostberg in third.
Paddon says: “It’s been a good day. Obviously to consolidate our positon in second is very good. That was obviously the target today. we got pretty close to Seb there in the morning run when road conditions played into our hands. We weren’t able to quite keep pace on the afternoon stages, still we’re very happy to be where we are. It’s a short day tomorrow. We really just need to concentrate on maintaining the position. This would be a great result for the team and for ourselves if we can finish it off, so that’s the target now.”
For Saturday’s five stages (reduced from eight) crews started in championship order, which put Ogier first on the road again and Paddon seventh.
The rally concludes on Sunday (European time) with just one special stage, after organisers cancelled yet another of the scheduled four stages.