Kiwi rally car driver Hayden Paddon leading World Champs

New Zealand rally car driver Hayden Paddon is in control after day one of the World Rally Championship round in Italy.

Rally car driver Hayden Paddon Source: Supplied

Paddon and co-driver John Kennard have an 8.8 second lead over two time world champion Sebastien Ogier with two full days left of rallying.

Paddon made the most of a favourable starting position to take wins in the first three stages on the gravel roads.

Paddon stayed consistent throughout the rest of day, finishing in the top 10 in the remaining stages.

There are still two days left of rallying with day two commencing Saturday night New Zealand time.