Hayden Paddon has revealed plans were afoot with Hyundai New Zealand that would see the Kiwi rally ace return to the World Rally Championship for 2020.
Taking to social media today, Paddon announced a partnership with a second Hyundai WRC team would see himself return to the global rally scene for the first time since a one-off event late last year.
The car would sport a striking green and black kiwi-inspired livery and would have the 33-year-old compete in four rounds of the 2020 WRC season, including a stint in the highly anticipated Rally New Zealand event in September.
Ultimately, the coronavirus-induced suspension of the WRC season has shelved Paddon’s return plans. Though it does beckon as a promising sign for a return for 2021.
Paddon was dropped from the works Hyundai outfit following a turbulent 2018 campaign. His drive was replaced by nine-time champion Sebastien Loeb and Paddon has yet to return to the squad he had competed for since 2014.
Last year, Paddon finished 38th in a Ford Fiesta R5 Mk.II in a one-off stint with M-Sport Ford during the Wales Rally GB.
The next round of the curtailed 2020 WRC season remains slated for Rally Turkey in late September, with the global pandemic likely restricting the championship to solely European-based rounds for the remainder of the year.
Toyota’s Sebastien Ogier currently heads the point standings eight points clear of teammate Elfyn Evans