Volkswagen's Sebastien Ogier says he is not surprised by the performance Hayden Paddon put in on Rally Italia Sardegna last weekend.

Paddon ended up not only taking his maiden WRC podium finish in Sardinia, but also led for 15 stages in his Hyundai i20 WRC, until hitting trouble on Saturday afternoon.

Speaking afterwards, Ogier was quick to salute the Kiwi's consistency and said he drove very well over the three-days.

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"Hayden Paddon and John Kennard [his co-driver] did a great job [en-route to second]," Ogier confirmed. "It was kind of a surprise for them to be fighting for so long at the front, but not completely a surprise for me.

"I knew he had good potential when I saw him competing and I drove against him in 2012 when we were both in a Skoda. I remember some good times from him.

"I take the chance to say really well done for him."

Hyundai boss Michel Nandan was also impressed by his 'third' driver and reckons Paddon has now proved he is a "real star of the future".