Paddon, who won the Production Car world title in a Symtech Racing Subaru Impreza in 2011, will switch to the Spanish ASM Motorsport operation. Paddon’s fellow New Zealander John Kennard will continue to co-drive.
“I am ecstatic about the move to Super 2000; it’s a fantastic opportunity,” said the 24-year-old Paddon. “I was lucky enough to test the Skoda Fabia S2000 in Europe a couple of months ago and it was an incredible car to drive. The S2000 is a full blown racecar and is basically a WRC car without the aero and turbo.”
He continued: “Several key personnel at ASM Motorsport have been involved with the Skoda and Seat world rally teams in the past and they are very enthusiastic and passionate about this project. The target for the whole team is to win the championship.”
Paddon’s decision to drive a Skoda in the SWRC was influenced by the partnership he has secured with Giltrap Group, New Zealand’s Skoda distributor and one of the country’s largest motor vehicle importer and retailer. Building supplies firm PlaceMakers New Zealand will also support Paddon in 2012.
Paddon will begin his SWRC campaign on next month’s Rally Sweden. He will also compete in Portugal, New Zealand, Finland, Great Britain, France and Spain.