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Colin McRae was famous for it, but these days it's unlikely that even the Flying Scotsman could get away with it. Technology in motorsport has come a long way, and one of the major advances has been in the form of onboard cameras – both inside and outside the car. Back in the 1990s not all cars had onboard cameras, and no matter what the driver told his team, if the car was off the road and damaged, it was generally the driver's fault. Unless the driver could convince the team manager otherwise. As the years progressed and most of the top cars were fitted with cameras, it became even more difficult for a driver to plead his case.
In this instance, a picture really does tell a thousand words.
Colin McRae was even known for removing the video tape from the onboard cameras, just so his indiscretions couldn't be shown to the world (or his team manager!). Thankfully we seem to be past those days. As well as the onboard footage, there are any number of fans hiding in thick forests with iPhones in hand to capture a driver's misdemeanours.
There's just no hiding from the truth anymore.
For Hayden Paddon, if there was one good thing that came out of his Rally Finland testing crash on Monday, it was that the onboard footage proved that he wasn't at fault. Fortuitous sponsorship from GoPro had cameras mounted in the car, on the car, and on Paddon himself, and they all captured the moment his Fiesta hit a rogue rock that sent the car into a soul-destroying tumble. There was no question that this was not driver error, and that a rock on the road launched the car into oblivion. Paddon knew as much, but for team boss Rich Millener to view the footage and see for himself, made it at least a little more acceptable for the Kiwi.
"You can't help but feel really sorry for Hayden. We don't blame him for this," Millener said.
"A rock's been pulled out and he's then discovered it sitting in the middle of the road in a blind, sixth-gear right-hander. There was nothing he could do to avoid it. "It's hit the bottom of the car and sent them into the air and off the road. They were passengers." Paddon's Rally Finland aspirations went from podium hopeful to devastated spectator in less than 10 seconds, and there was simply nothing he could do about it. Luck may not have been on his side, but technology certainly was.

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