M-Sport Ford World Rally Team will field two EcoBoost-powered Ford Fiesta R5 MkIIs in the FIA World Rally Championship’s premier support series at next week’s Wales Rally GB – Gus Greensmith and Hayden Paddon battling for the top results in WRC 2 Pro.
Fresh from a dramatic victory last time out in Turkey, Greensmith and co-driver Elliott Edmondson are hungry for more and confident of delivering another strong result behind the wheel of M-Sport and Ford’s latest global rally car. Competing on home soil, the young Brits will also hope to have home advantage on side as they tackle some of the world’s most challenging stages.
Making a welcome return to the service park, Hayden Paddon and John Kennard will also be hoping for a strong result as they take to the wheel of the Fiesta R5 MkII for the very first time. Using the outing in preparation for his return to the Ford Fiesta WRC at Rally Australia, Paddon is a proven rally winner and capable of challenging for the top results next week.
Team Principal, Richard Millener, said:
“It’s great to see two top drivers behind the wheel of the Ford Fiesta R5 MkII for our home event in Wales. Gus showed the stage-winning pace of the car last time out in Turkey, and it was great to see him secure the WRC 2 Pro victory – even if he did give us a bit of a scare after the penultimate stage!
“Hayden is a proven rally winner and I’m looking forward to seeing him start his comeback programme with the team. Although he doesn’t have any experience with the new Fiesta R5 MkII, he’s a top driver who’s very capable of delivering a strong result. I’m really looking forward to this one, and I think we have all the ingredients to deliver another top performance.”
Gus Greensmith said:
“It’s always a nice feeling to be back on home soil, and there are some truly legendary stages at this event. It’s a rally with some really tough days for the crews, and the weather can be really challenging too – it’s not a matter of if the fog comes, but when, and it’s that challenge that I’ve always enjoyed.
“It was great to secure the first victory for the Ford Fiesta R5 MkII in Turkey – albeit in somewhat surreal and dramatic circumstances! I had a big feeling of pride after that win because everyone had worked really hard. We proved our potential and the potential of the car, and have already made some further steps since then.
“Our goal is always to fight for the top positions, but the competition is going to be really strong next weekend. It will be tough, but I feel we have a good package and that we have what it takes to deliver another strong result for M-Sport and Ford.”
Hayden Paddon said:
“I can’t wait to get back in the driving seat, and I really enjoy Wales Rally GB. In a lot of ways, it reminds me of home and we’ll be hoping for a good run as we take to the wheel of M-Sport’s Ford Fiesta R5 MkII for the first time.
“It will be important to show the potential of the car which I’m sure we’ll quickly adapt to, but it’s also important that we get the miles under our belt. We’ve lacked too many rallies this year, so this will be the perfect warm up for Rally Australia when we’ll be back behind the wheel of a world rally car with the top-specification Fiesta.
“Although Wales is an event I’ve always enjoyed, the top results seem to have eluded us in the past. I’m confident of putting that right this year, and with the team behind us I’m sure we can deliver a strong result on their home soil.”