Watch: Hayden Paddon's Argentina title defence comes crashing down, WRC fans help flip rolled Hyundai

Hayden Paddon has survived a low-speed roll and the time lost that came with it to sit seventh after the first full day at Rally Argentina.

The Kiwi WRC driver is wondering what could have been after he was caught out by the minor accident. Despite taking two stage wins, Paddon still sits nearly four minutes behind rally leader Elfyn Evans.

Paddon lost nearly three minutes when his Hyundai i20 got caught in a rut on a left-hand hairpin, resulting in his car slowly rolling over and needing fans to help flip it back onto all four wheels.

"A difficult morning," Paddon said.

"The time loss that we had to get out of the car, push it back on its wheels and get going again. Luckily the damage wasn't too much.

"It's just a matter of being smart now and not lose any more time. I think maybe a good result is still possible."

Despite sitting as low as 19th throughout the first day, Paddon recovered exceptionally in the afternoon with wins in stage seven and eight.

The two wins moved the Kiwi up into seventh, where he stayed after finishing eighth quickest through the 6.04km ninth stage to complete the day.

Paddon wasn't the only driver to faulter on the Argentinian roads though, with Hyundai team-mate Dani Sordo losing 11 minutes after hitting a stone and breaking a steering arm and Citroen’s Kris Meeke taking significant damage when he rolled off course at speed into bush.


F1 drivers split on new safety plan to install 'shields' on cars

Formula One drivers are split over plans to test a new "shield" device to protect against flying debris.

The FIA will trial the transparent screen in the coming months for a potential introduction in 2018, as it pushes for greater head protection for drivers. Recent years have seen major head injuries in several motorsport series.

"I wouldn't mind trying out the shield, seeing how is the visibility," Mercedes driver Valtteri Bottas said on Thursday. "In terms of safety it would be a good step compared to what we have now."

Red Bull's Daniel Ricciardo was another supporter, saying "we've still got to see a bit more, but first impressions seem OK."

The FIA previously seemed to favor a metal frame known as the "halo," which was designed to stop a flying wheel hitting a driver's head but was criticized by some drivers on aesthetic grounds.

Toro Rosso's Daniil Kvyat said on Thursday he was "quite against" the shield and the halo. "The way Formula One should look should remain the same," he added. "We have enough protection."

Romain Grosjean of Haas voiced concern the "next step" would be completely closed cockpits.

Recent years have seen several high-profile head injuries, including the deaths of Formula Two driver Henry Surtees in 2009 when he was hit by a loose wheel and IndyCar driver Justin Wilson, who was struck by debris, in 2015.

In Formula One, Brazilian driver Felipe Massa missed the second half of the 2009 season when a loose spring from another car hit his helmet, leaving him needing surgery.

Lewis Hamilton in the 2014 Mercedes during Melbourne practice. Source: Associated Press



'Lake Tekapo is one of my favourite places' - English DJ legend Carl Cox reveals his link to Kiwi motorsport

The Brighton native is a big supporter of New Zealand grassroots motorsport. Source: 1 NEWS