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New Zealand Rally Championship runner-up Ben Hunt has been voted as the best driver in the championship outside of WRC star Hayden Paddon.
Hunt received 61% support among the 80-plus drivers, co-drivers and team officials that took part in the championship’s recent survey.
The 2015 national champion has enjoyed a strong season, highlighted by his stage win against Paddon at South Canterbury in June, and lies second to Paddon heading into the final rally of the season – the Hyundai New Zealand Raglan Rally of the Coast – next month.
Junior WRC driver and 2016 national champion David Holder and last year’s championship runner-up Matt Summerfield were the second most popular choices – each picking up 8% of the vote.
Other drivers to be nominated more than once were defending NZRC champion Andrew Hawkeswood, and Emma Gilmour.
Gull Rally Challenge championship leader Grant Blackberry and the recently retired/inactive Darren Galbraith were voted the most under-rated drivers in the sport. Both polled 10% of the vote from fellow drivers, co-drivers and team officials in a very close and subjective category.
Dylan Turner and Josh Marston each picked up 7% of the vote while 2WD champ Dylan Thomson received support from 6% of those that took part.
Other drivers to feature with multiple votes were Phil Campbell, Raana Horan, Regan Ross, Adam Bligh, Greg Murphy, Matt Summerfield, Graham Featherstone and Emma Gilmour.
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