Thu 13 Jun 2024

Paddon charges to BAUHAUS super special win in ERC

Hayden Paddon heads into the first full day of BAUHAUS Royal Rally of Scandinavia action on top of the overall FIA European Rally Championship classification after he won the opening super special stage in out-of-town Karlstad this evening.

Co-driven by John Kennard, the 2023 ERC champion took 1min 45.6sec to complete the 2.23-kilometre BAUHAUS stage, a challenging 2.23-kilometre mixed-surface test, aboard his Pirelli-equipped Hyundai i20 N Rally2.  

“It was actually a very sedate drive in there, nice and smoth,” said Paddon, who headed Mads Østberg by 0.03sec. “It wasn’t on the limit, it could have been quicker but we’re through.”  

Rain in the hour before the start made for a slippery surface, particularly in the closing Tarmac section in front of the Välsviken branch of BAUHAUS, a major chain of home and garden improvement stores across Sweden and beyond. However, with a dry line appearing, drivers starting the stage lower down the order benefited from a higher grip levels, even though there was more light rain later on.

Behind Michelin-equipped Østberg (TRT Rally Team Citroën C3 Rally2), Mārtiṇš Sesks swiped two stage marker boards in his Team MRF Tyres Toyota GR Yaris Rally2 on his way to clocking a time of 1min 46.6sec. The Latvian  said: “It was a bit slippery, I went a little bit wide but I knew there was more space, it’s fine.”  

Simone Tempestini was fourth quickest in his Michelin-shod Škoda Fabia RS Rally2 with Jon Armstrong (M-Sport Ford Fiesta Rally2) fifth as Eyvind Brynildsen made it six different car manufacturers in the top six in his Volkswagen Polo GTI R5.  

Andrea Mabellini (above) was seventh fastest followed by multiple FIA World Rallycross champion Johan Kristoffersson and Oliver Solberg. The 2023 BAUHAUS Royal Rally of Scandinavia winner said: “It started raining in the beginning so I just took it easy, it’s so easy to do a mistake. Tonight doesn’t matter, tomorrow is the flat-out action.”

On his return to international rallying for the first time since 2019, Petter Solberg (above) completed SSS1 with smoke and flames coming from underneath his Volkswagen Polo GTI R5. He was 10th fastest nevertheless and was able to drive back to overnight parc fermé following a short delay.  

Miko Marczyk dropped vital seconds running through a ditch on his was way to the 11th fastest time followed by Isak Reiersen, Efrén Llarena, Frank Tore Larsen and Filip Mareš. The Hankook-equipped Mareš endured an anxious start after his ACCR Toyota Dolák mechanics rushed to repair a leaking hose and he reported taking no risks during the stage as result.  

ERC points leader Mathieu Franceschi and Philip Allen both stalled at the stage start.

Tristan Charpentier was fastest in FIA ERC3 and the ERC Fiesta Rally3 Trophy on his championship debut as Patrik Hallberg set the pace in FIA ERC4 and the Hankook-equipped FIA Junior ERC catgory. 

BAUHAUS Royal Rally of Scandinavia resumes with SS2, the 10.18-kilometre Grönlund 1 stage, from 07:51 tomorrow (Friday).

Starts: Thursday, July 18, 2024 at 4:31:00 AM
Starts: Friday, July 26, 2024 at 7:00:00 AM
Starts: Saturday, July 27, 2024 at 6:00:00 AM