TARGA Great Barrier Reef will undergo a major transformation with the exciting Cassowary Coast added to the tarmac rally course from September 4-6.

The biggest route change since the maiden TARGA Great Barrier Reef in 2018 will see multiple stages run in the Cassowary Coast region, approximately 100km to the south of the event’s base in Cairns.

Already widely acclaimed, the event injected $3 million in the Far North Queensland economy with 85 percent landing in the private sector last year.

The inclusion of the Cassowary Coast will see the total competitive distance of the event jump to 230.97km, an increase of 25 percent while the total number of timed stages increases to 20, up by four. 

While the whole course remains provisional at the moment, the plan sees eight stages on the Cassowary Coast on the middle of the three day event, Saturday September 5. The inclusion adds an exciting new dimension to TARGA Great Barrier Reef with the area’s stunning topography and unique reef location.

“TARGA Great Barrier Reef brought this large scale motorsport event to Far North Queensland that engaged many motoring enthusiasts, along with activating hundreds of volunteers with an interest in cars,” TARGA chief executive Mark Perry said.

“Aside from injecting direct economic benefits to local business and trades, our various promotion and broadcast platforms offer great publicity value to the destination in which we’re touring.”

“We have identified provisional stages and will be issuing letters to all residents who may be impacted by the event, and encourage anyone with questions to contact TARGA direct.”

Attuned to operating in regional locations with precious wildlife populations, TARGA has enlisted the advice of world leading veterinarian specialising in Cassowaries, Dr Graham Lauridsen, to mitigate any risk to the region’s local population.

“I’m pleased to know that in designing this course TARGA officials are considering the habitats of local wildlife and will engage a mitigation strategy to ensure all due care is put into place for this event,” Dr Lauridsen said.

“Among those strategies will be considerations of time of day that particular roads will be utilised for the course to avoid Cassowary interactions, and spotting marshals as an added safety mechanism.”

TARGA’s major digital campaigns and television package will showcase the region’s majesty to a national and international audience through the Nine Network in HD and distributed to a potential global audience of two billion.

Cassowary Coast residents are encouraged to be part of TARGA Great Barrier Reef with the event organisers seeking to fill a multitude of volunteer positions.

Significantly more than 2000 people had direct involvement in the 2019 event with a further 40,000 spectators attending TARGAFest, TARGA Expo and the competition stages on Far North Queensland’s unique roads.

TARGA Great Barrier Reef is the second leg of the three-round Motorsport Australia TARGA Championship that begins with the time-honoured TARGA Tasmania in late April and concludes with TARGA High Country based at Mt Buller in Victoria in November.