Kiwi World Championship rally driver Hayden Paddon is encouraging the FIA to help invest in the feeder series into the sport's elite level.

The FIA has committed to improving the link between national championships and series that feed the leading drivers into the WRC.

"There is definitely something in the middle missing," Paddon told The Herald. "At the moment it is a huge step to go from a national championship rally into the WRC particularly if you are outside Europe.

"We were lucky - we had the Pirelli Star driver scholarship to help us make that step - without it we wouldn't have been able to make that step.


"For sure there needs to be a scholarship in there similar to help people from outside Europe because at the end of the day it is a world championship and you need to be attracting drivers from all around the world."

At the moment rallying in New Zealand is on a high with bumper fields and the growth of modern AP4 cars but the financial restraints are preventing our best drivers from trying to emulate what Paddon has achieved.

A natural pathway would be for the leading Kiwi drivers to enter the Asia Pacific Rally Championship with the best drivers there getting a scholarship into WRC 2 - the development series on the global stage.

With many talented young stars like Mike Young, David Holder, Matt Summerfield and Sloan Cox needing only an opportunity to showcase their talents on an international stage Paddon is hopeful this push from the FIA could be the missing link.

"New Zealand has definitely got the talent to have another driver in the WRC even more than one," Paddon said.

"It is just a matter of finding processes and ways to get them here financially and create those opportunities."