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Happy customers . . . Rally driver Hayden Paddon (left) was at the Oamaru Paper Plus on Tuesday to sign copies of his book. Among the 25 people to attend the signing were Peter Fridd, Elizabeth Eason and Cherie Fridd. PHOTO: GUS PATTERSON

New Zealand rally driver Hayden Paddon stopped by Oamaru on Tuesday as part of his nationwide tour to promote his book – Driven: My Story.

Originally from Geraldine, Paddon was at Oamaru Paper Plus to sign copies of his book, take photos, and have a chat with fans.

He said he was enjoying the chance to meet people during his weeklong tour of the country, which went from Dunedin to Auckland.

He will be attending the Waimate 50 this year, and said he always loved coming back to South Canterbury.

“[South Canterbury] is home still – the Waimate 50 has a lot of history and is quite iconic, there are not many street races left in the country.”

This year he said he will drive one of his hill climb cars with 800 horsepower under the bonnet.

“I will be wearing out more tyres and get a bit more smoke going.”

Peter and Cherie Fridd were at Tuesday’s signing and said they enjoyed getting the chance to meet one of New Zealand’s greatest motorsport drivers.

“My husband and I have been on Hayden Paddon tours, and we drive rally ourselves,” Mrs Fridd said.

Also with them was their granddaughter Elizabeth Eason (16), who is also from Geraldine, and is friends with Paddon’s younger sister.

Elizabeth did not have plans to get into motorsport herself, but said she was a supporter of Paddon and what he had achieved.

Oamaru Paper Plus manager Lisa Johnstone said about 25 people had come to the event.

“It is a good turnout, people had the chance to get a photo and have a chat, he wasn’t rushing people.

“He left some signed copies here too, so if people get in quick they might be able to get some.”