Hayden Paddon Hyundai 1

Hyundai Motorsport has signed a new three-year contract with Hayden Paddon that will see the Kiwi contest all rounds of the FIA World Rally Championship (WRC) with the team from 2016.

Paddon, who initially joined Hyundai Motorsport for a six-rally campaign in 2014 and has been running an expanded programme of twelve WRC events this season, will step up to a full time role from Rallye Monte-Carlo in 2016 January alongside his co-driver John Kennard.

Having made his debut as a Hyundai Motorsport driver at Rally d’Italia in June 2014, at the same event twelve months later Paddon, 28, led a WRC event for the first time and claimed his maiden WRC podium.

Hayden Paddon Hyundai 2

“Since he joined the team early last year, he has proven to be a worthy addition to our young team. He is consistent, quick and determined and with even more potential for growth. From the start of our WRC programme, we have wanted to support fresh, young talent and Hayden has shown just how successful this can be,” commented team principal Michel Nandan.

“The two seasons with Hyundai Motorsport have been an amazing journey and we have grown a lot. The team has helped me to develop and based on the rate that we have progressed together I have no doubt we will be winning soon. We are all working and striving towards becoming world champions and I firmly believe Hyundai will offer me the best opportunity to achieve that goal. First and foremost, though, we must target our first rally victory and that is my personal target for 2016,” Paddon said.

He will be driving the new-gen five-door i20 WRC next year.