Hayden Paddon romped home to victory in this weekend’s International Rally of Whangarei.
The former WRC winner picked up a puncture in the day’s final stage.
However, despite dropping over three minutes, Paddon still finished four minutes and nine seconds ahead of Ben Hunt.
“Mega weekend, mega result,” Paddon said.
Paddon won all but one stage over the three days, re-setting six of his previous stage records set in 2019.
The win backs up his victory in the New Zealand Rally Championship opener at Rally Otago in April.
This year is also Paddon’s seventh career triumph in the Northland rally.
Hunt ended up nearly two minutes clear of Raana Horan’s Skoda Fabia R5 in third.
Kingsley Jones drove a trouble-free rally to claim fourth place in his Skoda, while Hadyn McKenzie was fifth in his debut outing on the challenging Whangarei roads and gravel.
Rally Otago podium finisher Regan Ross clinched sixth in his Ford Fiesta R5.
Ari Pettigrew was a sublime seventh overall and eased his BMW 318ti to a comfortable win in the Open 2WD class.
Anthony and Zoe Jones were a mere 20s ahead of John Silcock and Donna Elder in a closely fought Historical category.
Dylan Thomson fought back on Sunday after dropping some time to Jordan Grant to win the FIA Group N 2WD class by 14.9 seconds.
The third round of the 2021 New Zealand Rally Championship will be the Rally of South Canterbury on June 19.
|FIA Group N
|Open Class 2WD
|Rally Challenge 4WD
|Rally Challenge 2WD
|Rally Challenge Gp A
|2WD up to 1750cc
|2WD over 1750cc
|Anthony Te Rito
|4WD Gp A
Main Image: Geoff Ridder