Following the cancellation of Stage 1 of the 2017 Rallye Monte Carlo and the fatal accident involving the car of Hayden Paddon and a spectator, the Hyundai Motorsport team have withdrawen the #4 Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC.
The team released the following statement:
Hyundai Motorsport is deeply saddened to learn of the tragic passing of a spectator during the opening stage of Rallye Monte-Carlo on Thursday evening.
The incident occurred at the same time as the #4 Hyundai i20 Coupe WRC of Hayden Paddon and John Kennard crashed into the mountainside, after the car hit a patch of black ice at the entry to a left-hand turn.
The team and crew have pledged their full support to the event organisers and authorities to understand the full details.
Hyundai Motorsport extends its condolences to the family, friends and individuals affected.
Along with this came the confirmation from Automobile Club de Monaco of the incident via a statement:
The Automobile Club de Monaco regrets to advise further details following incident of the car #4 (Paddon/Kennard) in SS 1.
The spectator was transported by helicopter from the stage to hospital in Nice. Despite the best efforts of the medical staff, the spectator has sadly died.
An investigation has commenced into the incident and all involved parties will provide assistance to the authorities.
Everyone associated with the event extends their deepest sympathies and condolences to the families, friends and individuals affected.’
Following the accident Paddon commented “That wasn’t the start we wanted to this first rally of the season. We got caught out by some black ice near the end of the first stage. The car snapped sideways and, from there, we were just passengers.
“There wasn’t much damage to the car but I’m sorry for the team, who have all put in so much work to get here. I am incredibly saddened by today’s accident and my thoughts are with the family and friends of the person involved.”