Targa News

01.12.2021

TARGA TASMANIA 30 CELEBRATIONS KICK OFF WITH UNIQUE DRIVE FOR TASMANIANS

Tasmanians will have the rare opportunity to join the field of TARGA Tasmania when the 30th running of the ultimate tarmac rally gets underway on April 26 next year.

For the first time, the field, which showcases a cavalcade of motoring history, will include a special Tasmanian Tour section just for Tasmanian residents.

After three decades of unwavering support from the local community, event organisers have decided that Tasmanians deserve a well-priced opportunity to do what they have always wanted to do; drive in TARGA Tasmania!

TARGA CEO, Mark Perry said “The Tasmanian community have been right behind TARGA from day one in 1992, with literally thousands of people turning out each year to cheer on the cars and crews taking part, while also being there for us in sad times like we experienced earlier this year.

“Many Tasmanians have dreamed of taking part just once and we understand that this can be a difficult and expensive exercise. So, with there being touring options these days we thought what better way to thank Tasmanians than to remove these obstacles  and make it as easy as we can for Tasmanians to join us in celebrating 30 years of their event, TARGA Tasmania.

“The price for the Tasmanian Tour has been set at just $500 for a single day experience like nothing you have ever done before. While there are some restrictions on the choice of car, you won’t need an expensive or rare collectable classic fitted out with the latest safety gear in order to take part.  In fact, this tour is perfect for the motoring enthusiast who has always wanted to drive on a TARGA Stage and is happy to do it in the family’s every day transport.”

Launched in time for Christmas, this will be the perfect gift for Mum,Dad or any member of the family who loves cars.  A Christmas gift to remember with all entries receiving a TARGA Tasmania Christmas gift card ready for wrapping up and putting under the tree.

Spots are naturally very limited for this exclusive and rare opportunity to take part in one of the world’s greatest motoring experiences in the 30th anniversary event.

Enquiries and further information to be a part of it all and secure your spot should be emailed to enquiries@targa.com.au.

04.10.2021

TARGA moves dates to maximise impact

In order to maximise the impact of TARGA Tasmania’s 30th anniversary event, organisers have reverted to a traditional late April date to move beyond any likely COVID-19 restrictions.

The event was due to move to an earlier time-slot in 2022 – from March 8 to 13 – but will now be held from Tuesday April 26 to Sunday May 1.

The later date also facilitates the running of TARGA High Country from February 11 to 13, the same slot used earlier this year for the Mt Buller-based event, and away from the scheduled November 2021 dates that were likely to still be heavily impacted by COVID-19 protocols.

TARGA Australia CEO Mark Perry said the new dates buy both events vital time for Australian states to move beyond severe pandemic restrictions.

“The 30th running of TARGA Tasmania is a huge opportunity for everyone who has been involved over the years to join in and celebrate this magnificent milestone,” Perry said.

“Our competitors and tour participants come from all over Australia, and people need certainty in planning their travel and confidence that the event will take place.

“This new schedule buys everyone an additional seven weeks and in our early survey of competitors this was welcomed, seen as a real plus.

“We want to make the 30th anniversary something special – the event of the year for motorsport and car enthusiasts. We have some exciting things planned – not just for our entrants but all the TARGA fans in Tasmania as well.

“These might have been in doubt with a March event but now we can continue to build on our exciting plans to make the 30th TARGA Tasmania something really special.

“TARGA High Country is also an important event on our calendar and the February date will allow far more mainland competitors to take part than if we ran it in November this year as originally planned.

“So the date moves are a win, win. Great for TARGA Tasmania and also for TARGA High Country and great for competitors and also TARGA enthusiasts.”

TARGA Tasmania will get underway on Tuesday April 26, with participants spending the first three nights in Launceston.

The competition cars will then spend the Friday and Saturday nights in Strahan, while Tour entries will stay in Cradle Mountain. The event will conclude in Hobart on Sunday May 1.

TARGA High Country will remain based out of Mt Buller, with three days of competition in Victoria’s north east, starting on Friday February 11 and finishing back in the alpine village on Sunday February 13.

Media contact details

Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902 

16.09.2021

Statement from Mark Perry, CEO of Targa Australia, following the release of the Investigatory Tribunal Report by Motorsport Australia

Thursday September 16, 2021

The Investigatory Tribunal was set up by Motorsport Australia after the tragic deaths in Targa Tasmania this year, and we again express our condolences to the family and friends of Shane Navin, Leigh Mundy and Dennis Neagle for the loss of their loved ones.

It is a loss still felt by everyone at Targa and that is why we welcomed the appointment of the Tribunal by Motorsport Australia and greatly appreciate the effort that has gone into its report.

We fully cooperated with the Tribunal, worked closely with Motorsport Australia and we thank all of the people who made a contribution to the report. We share a common goal to make tarmac rally events as safe as they can be.

We know that competitor safety, while understanding the inherent risks of motorsport, must be a priority for all of involved in our sport.

Targa Australia will now work with Motorsport Australia to implement all 23 recommendations from the Tribunal.

Targa Australia and Motorsport Australia are committed to running a highly successful 30th Anniversary Targa Tasmania event in March 2022. It is an event with wonderful history and together we will work to ensure its ongoing success for decades to come.

Some of the recommendations fall to us to implement, while others fall to Motorsport Australia as the controlling body. We will work together to have them implemented for Targa Tasmania in 2022.

Importantly, at Targa Great Barrier Reef earlier this month, seven of the 13 safety recommendations requiring Targa Australia’s response – around course design and top and average speeds – were already implemented.

All parties understand that we have much to do in the coming months but we embrace the challenge that will see safety at our events continue to evolve and improve.

The full Investigatory Tribunal Report can be read here.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 99

16.09.2021

Motorsport Australia and Mark Perry media conferences today

Thursday September 16, 2021

Following the release today of the report of the Investigatory Tribunal set up by Motorsport Australia after the fatalities at Targa Tasmania this year, Mark Perry, Targa Australia CEO, will be available at an all-in interview opportunity in the Harbour Room at the Grand Chancellor Hotel in Hobart at 3:00pm today, Thursday September 16.

Motorsport Australia is also conducting a media opportunity via Zoom – 2pm AEST
Who: Eugene Arocca, Motorsport Australia CEO
Where: Zoom Meeting (details below)
When: 2pm AEST, Thursday 16 September

https://us06web.zoom.us/j/85166130191?pwd=aVk1MnkxRytLclBGSS9xdmE1dEwvdz09
Meeting ID: 851 6613 0191
Passcode: 191717 
Media may also join the Motorsport Australia call by phone, email priordan@motorsport.org.au for dial in details.

For more information on the TARGA media opportunity, please contact Ian Chesterman (0417 530 902orianchesterman@sportcom.com.au)

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 99

05.09.2021

What the winners said

credit: Otherside Productions // Simon Chapman

Our reporter caught up with the class winners following the fourth edition of TARGA Great Barrier Reef.

It’s Live in Queensland overall/It’s Live in Queensland GT Outright, Cairns Regional Council GT Production winner: 

Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi)

We had a red hot go and I drove the best I’ve ever driven and we caught him (Quinn) on the Palmerston run (TS 15),” Anear said.

“He wasn’t going to let me by and it was very satisfying. Then we managed to double the lead again on the next shorter stage.”

“Because the roads were damp we reckon the Subaru was the right car for the conditions.

“I’ve got to thank Ben Newman who gave me the car which was prepared by Buckby Motorsport on the proviso that ‘you go up there and win it’.

“If it wasn’t for those guys we wouldn’t have made it here so I can’t thank them enough.”

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 winner:

Paolo Buccini/Claire Buccini (2008 BMW 135i)

“We had a bit of fun. It was a little bit greasy out there today but as long as you treated it with respect you were fine,” Buccini said.

“The stages were amazing and it was well organised. It was great.”

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4 winner:

Geoff Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R)

“Not quite the perfect weekend because if you look closely at the back and the front of the car on the driver’s side it wasn’t the best weekend we could have had,” Geoff Hewitt said, pointing to some scrapes.

“That was on the Palmerston stage so I guess it could have been worse but we are delighted to have won the class.”

Shannons Classic GT winner: 

Anthony Genocchio/Robert Horsfall (1983 Holden Commodore)

“We had a good first day and then on the second day it was dry up until the afternoon,” Genocchio explained.

“I didn’t really like the last two stages on Saturday because they were very wet so we eased off and got the car home.

“That’s where (Jon) Siddins put a minute on me I think on the Palmerston stage. We were having a good battle in the dry but unfortunately he had some mechanical issues (gearbox).

“I’ve had plenty of those and not finished so I have plenty of sympathy for them.”

Shannons Classic Handicap winner:

Patrick Barnett/Katie Barnett (1979 Ford Cortina)

“Very enjoyable event and couldn’t be happier.” 

Reef Hotel & Casino GT Sports Trophy winner:

Geoffrey Olholm/Matthew Sanders (2019 Toyota Supra GTS)

“The car was really strong in wet conditions. Matthew (co-driver) is from Adelaide and has never been here before so the course was new to him,” Olholm said.

“So Matthew did a great job calling the notes. I was battling the Traction Control system all weekend and couldn’t turn it off.

“That meant I was losing time on the dry stages. But we are stoked to get the win.”

Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy winner:

Tim Hall/Kym Hall (1980 Holden Commodore)

“We had a bit of an incident on the Palmerston stage on the timber bridges and had a bit of an off and (hit) a bit of a wall,”

Cairns Regional Council TSD Trophy winner:

Darryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Pursuit Ute)

“It was on from the word go,” Darryl Marshall said.

“We really didn’t have a moment to ease off at all and had to be right on the ball the whole time. It was as exhausting an event as TARGA Tasmania.

“The three of us (second and third) fought it out the whole weekend. It was really entertaining.”

Cairns & Great Barrier Reef Rookie Rallye winner:

Wayne Lamont/Errol Rosenblatt (2012 Toyota 86)

“We had a ball. It was 10 times better than I thought it would be,” Lamont said.

credit: Otherside Productions // Simon Chapman

05.09.2021

Anear sizzles to snatch last gasp TARGA victory

Sunday September 5, 2021

Luke Anear and Andy Sarandis unleashed a powerhouse finish to claim a gripping victory at the fourth running of TARGA Great Barrier Reef.

 Going into the final day 11 seconds off the lead, Anear and Saradis surged to the front with two stages remaining in their 2010 Subaru WRX STi, securing a breath-taking win in It’s Live in Queensland overall classification.The pair overhauled last year’s winners Tony Quinn and Brian Foster on the 27.98km Palmerston (15th of 17 stages) test, leaping to a 10 second lead before stretching the margin to 17 seconds at the finish.It was the perfect result for gravel and tarmac regular Anear who was forced into a vehicle change just ahead of the Cairns-based event after an accident in Tasmania to his exotic Mercedes AMG GT R.

Locals Steve Van Der Brug and Linda Rankine finished third overall in 2010 Subaru WRX STi.The top three positions were duplicated in GT Outright while Anear also snared Cairns Regional Council GT Production.

“We had a red hot go and I drove the best I’ve ever driven and we caught him (Quinn) on the Palmerston run (TS 15),” Anear said.

 “He wasn’t going to let me by and it was very satisfying. Then we managed to double the lead again on the next shorter stage.”“Because the roads were damp we reckon the Subaru was the right car for the conditions.“I’ve got to thank Ben Newman who gave me the car which was prepared by Buckby Motorsport on the proviso that ‘you go up there and win it’.”Jon and Gina Siddins were an early casualty after the opening Gillies Range stage when their 1970 Datsun 240Zencountered gearbox problems, cruelly seeing a potential win vanish in Shannons Classic GT.

 The demise of the Datsun left Anthony Genocchio and Robert Horsfall to secure a big victory in their 1983 Holden Commodore.It was a one-act affair in Shannons Classic with Patrick Barnett and Katie Barnett (1979 Ford Cortina) picking up the victory.

Paolo and Claire Buccini guided their 2008 BMW 135i to a comfortable victory in Dutton Garage Early Modern 2, while Geoff and Toni Hewitt prevailed in Early Modern 4 in their beautifully prepared 2009 Nissan GT-R.

Geoffrey Olholm and Matthew Sanders completed the event to take the win in Reef Hotel & Casino GT Sports Trophy, finishing 2 minutes 16 seconds ahead of Gwesyn Dalliston and Robert Goodwin (2003 Nissan 350Z).

Picking up from where they left off last year, Tim and Kym Hall were victorious in Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy in their 1980 Holden Commodore. The Halls won by almost nine minutes.

Darryl and Peter Marshall were unflappable in their 2002 Ford Pursuit Ute to clinch top spot in the time, speed and distance challenge presented in the Cairns Regional Council TSD Trophy.

Wayne Lamont/Errol Rosenblatt (2012 Toyota 86) took the spoils in Cairns & Great Barrier Reef Rookie Rallye.

TARGA Great Barrier Reef

Final results – Day 3 of 3 (provisional)

It’s Live Queensland overall

1 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi)

2 Tony Quinn/Brian Foster (2018 Nissan GT-R) +17s

3 Steven Van Der Brug/Linda Rankine (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +4min07s

4 Tony/Sandra Seymour (2013 Lotus Exige) +5.03s

5 Mark Griffith/Neill Woolley (2017 Mercedes A45) +5.45s

 It’s Live Queensland GT Outright

1 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi)

2 Tony Quinn/Brian Foster (2018 Nissan GT-R) +17s

3 Steven Van Der Brug/Linda Rankine (2010 Subaru WRX STi) 4.07ss

Cairns Regional Council GT Production

1 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi)

2 Steven Van Der Brug/Linda Rankine (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +4.07

3 Mark Griffith/Neill Woolley (2017 Mercedes A45) +5.45s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2

1 Paolo Buccini/Claire Buccini (2008 BMW 135i)

2 Ian Gough/Zahary Gough (1998 Nissan Skyline) +7:55s

3 Christopher Carney/Lacey Wade (1991 Toyota Corolla GTi-SX) +16.29s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4

1 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R)

2 Graeme Colls/Sandra Colls (1997 Subaru WRX STi) 2:58s

3 Christopher Jaques/Kate Jaques (2001 Mitsubishi. Evo IX) 5.15s

 Shannons Classic (handicap)

1 Patrick Barnett/Katie Barnett (1979 Ford Cortina)

 Shannons Classic GT

1 Anthony Genocchio/Robert Horsfall (1983 Holden Commodore)

2 Stewart Reid/Jennifer Cole (1980 Ford Escort) +34s

3 Jamie MacFarlane/Raymond Priest (1982 Holden Commodore Rally) +4.46s

Reef Hotel & Casino GT Sports Trophy

1 Geoffrey Olholm/Matthew Sanders (2019 Toyota Supra GTS)

2 Gwesyn Dalliston/Robert Goodwin (2003 Nissan 350Z Track) +2.16s

3 Joe Chuadee/Jason Holt (2004 Renault Megane) +5.50s

 Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy

1 Timothy Hall/Kym Hall (1980 Holden Commodore)

2 Thomas English/Trent Vidler (1967 Holden HR Ute) 4:47s

3 Leo Rodriguez/Paul Frank (1988 Mazda RX-7) +8.55s

Cairns Regional Council TSD Trophy

1 Darryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Falcon Pursuit 250) +13 points

2eq Agim Selita/Gezim Bashi (2011 BMW 135i M Sports) +18

2eq Benjamin Brooksby/Rob Sheppard (2005 Mitsubishi Magna VRX) +18

Cairns & Great Barrier Reef Rookie Rallye

1 Wayne Lamont/Errol Rosenblatt (2012 Toyota 86)

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social Media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

04.09.2021

Battle heats up for Quinn with day to go

credit: Otherside Productions // Simon Chapman

Saturday September 4, 2021

Tony Quinn has staved off a late attack to protect his lead after the second day of TARGA Great Barrier Reef.

The canny entrepreneur, who has again teamed up with Brian Foster in defence of their 2020 title in Cairns, will go into the final day of competition with a slender 11 second lead. 

After completing six stages on the second day, Quinn and Foster were unflappable in the 2018 Nissan GT-R.

Luke Anear and Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi) started the day 16 seconds behind Quinn/Foster and put in some quick runs before lunch to keep within 20 seconds of the Quinn/Foster Nissan before ending the day within range of jumping into the lead with five stages remaining tomorrow.

Brisbane pair Tony and Sandra Seymour are peeling off some consistent stages to maintain third overall in their 2013 Lotus Exige.

Quinn and Foster also lead It’s Live Queensland GT Outright by the same margin, 17 seconds from Anear and Sarandis who continue to enjoy a solid lead in Cairns Regional Council GT Production.

“We are going along okay, not pushing too hard and keeping out of trouble,” Quinn said.

“We are happy to hold the lead but there are another five stages to go tomorrow so there is nothing to be gained by getting ahead of ourselves.”

The experienced pairing of Jon and Gina Siddins pushed hard to move into the lead in Shannons Classic GT, climbing to a 1min12sec advantage.

The Gold Coast pair are running fresh livery for the event and have reverted to original shock absorbers in their 1970 Datsun 240Z. Overnight leaders Anthony Genocchio and Robert Horsfall (1983 Holden Commodore) are back in second place.

Shannons Classic standings sees Patrick Barnett and Katie Barnett (1979 Ford Cortina) are the sole crew left in the class.

Paolo Buccini and Claire Buccini clear out to a lead of over six minutes in Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 while in Dutton Garage Early Modern 4 Geoffrey and Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) hold a solid advantage.

Positions remain tight at the front of the Reef Hotel & Casino GT Sports Trophy with Geoffrey Olholm and Matthew Sanders showing the way in a 2019 Toyota Supra GTS.

The Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy class is headed by Tim and Kym Hall (1980 Holden Commodore) while the highly successful team of Darryl and Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Falcon Pursuit Ute 250) have edged clear in the points-penalty based Cairns Regional Council TSD Trophy.

The sole runner in Cairns & Great Barrier Reef Rookie Rallye, Wayne Lamont/Errol Rosenblatt (2012 Toyota 86), completed the day’s test. 

 Results – Day 2 of 3 (provisional)

 It’s Live Queensland overall

1 Tony Quinn/Brian Foster (2018 Nissan GT-R)

2 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +11s

3 Steven Van Der Brug/Linda Rankine (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +2min36s

4eq Jon Siddins/Gina Siddins (1970 Datsun 240Z) +2min48s

4eq Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) 2.48s

 It’s Live Queensland GT Outright

1 Tony Quinn/Brian Foster (2018 Nissan GT-R)

2 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +11s

3 Steven Van Der Brug/Linda Rankine (2010 Subaru WRX STi) 2.36s

 Cairns Regional Council GT Production

1 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi)

2 Steven Van Der Brug/Linda Rankine (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +2.25s

3 Mark Griffith/Neill Woolley (2017 Mercedes A45) +2.46s

 Dutton Garage Early Modern 2

1 Paolo Buccini/Claire Buccini (2008 BMW 135i)

2 Ian Gough/Zahary Gough (1998 Nissan Skyline) +6mins

3 Christopher Carney/Lacey Wade (1991 Toyota Corolla GTi-SX) +10.08s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4

1 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R)

2  Graeme Colls/Sandra Colls (1997 Subaru WRX STi) 4.32s

3 Aaron Dunkerton/Alan Stean (2003 Mitsubishi Evo VIII) +4.43s

 Shannons Classic (handicap)

1 Patrick Barnett/Katie Barnett (1979 Ford Cortina)

 Shannons Classic GT

1 Jon Siddins/Gina Siddins (1970 Datsun 240Z)

2 Anthony Genocchio/Robert Horsfall (1983 Holden Commodore) +1min27s

3 Stewart Reid/Jennifer Cole (1980 Ford Escort) +1.52s

 Reef Hotel & Casino GT Sports Trophy

1 Geoffrey Olholm/Matthew Sanders (2019 Toyota Supra GTS)

2 Gwesyn Dalliston/Robert Goodwin (2003 Nissan 350Z Track) +2.27s

3 Joe Chuadee/Jason Holt (2004 Renault Megane) +4.40s

 Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy

1 Timothy Hall/Kym Hall (1980 Holden Commodore)

2 Leo Rodriguez/Paul Frank (1988 Mazda RX-7) +3.37s

3 Thomas English/Trent Vidler (1967 Holden HR Ute) 4:36s

 Cairns Regional Council TSD Trophy

1 Darryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Falcon Pursuit 250) +8 points

2 Agim Selita/Gezim Bashi (2011 BMW 135i M Sports) +13

3 Benjamin Brooksby/Rob Sheppard (2005 Mitsubishi Magna VRX) +18

 Cairns & Great Barrier Reef Rookie Rallye

1 Wayne Lamont/Errol Rosenblatt (2012 Toyota 86)

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social Media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

03.09.2021

Quinn establishes early advantage

Friday September 3, 2021

Champion driver Tony Quinn delivered a copybook exhibition of tarmac rallying to lead the overall field following the opening leg of competition in Cairns.

Chasing a second successive victory at the event on Tropical North Queensland’s striking and demanding roads, Quinn and co-driver Brian Foster have established a handy 24 second lead in their Nissan GT-R in the It’s Live Queensland overall standings.

The highly experienced Quinn, whose extensive list of track and rally triumphs is spearheaded by winning the coveted TARGA Tasmania twice, is attempting to duplicate his effort at Cairns last year by leading from the outset.

Officials downgraded the final stage of the day, Copperlode (TS 6) due to road conditions.

“It was a reasonable day of driving,” the laid-back Quinn said.

“It was steady as she goes so we just have to maintain the pace and not make any mistakes. But there is no time to get comfortable.”

Luke Anear and Andy Sarandis are in second place overall. After a late switch of car just before the event, Anear and Sarandis are now doing battle in a 2010 Subaru WRX STi. 

Tony and Sandra Seymour are third overall, 37 seconds behind the leaders, in a 2013 Lotus Exige. The leading three positions are duplicated in the GT Outright class.

Anear and Sarandis also lead GT Production with a 60 second advantage ahead of Mark Griffith and Neill Wooley’s 2017 Mercedes-Benz A45.

Paolo and Claire Buccini (2008 BMW 135i) have forged a tidy lead in Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 while Geoff and Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) are showing the way in Dutton Garage Early Modern 4.

Classic GT stars Jon and Gina Siddins showed the way in their 1970 Datsun 240z before ending proceedings in second, nine seconds behind Anthony Genocchio and Robert Horsfall (1983 Holden Commodore) in Shannons Classic GT.

A tight battle is raging in Shannons Classic Handicap with Patrick Barnett and Katie Barnett (1979 Ford Cortina) clinging to a 24 second lead over Tyrone Gilbert and Tania Wearing (1967 Holden HR Ute).

A scan through the trophy classes sees Darryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Falcon Pursuit 250) and Agim Selita/Gezim Bashi (2011 BMW 135i M Sports) co-leaders on three points. Thoroughbred Trophy is headed by Tim and Kym Hall in their 1980 Holden Commodore. GT Sports Trophy is topped by the 2019 Toyota Supra GTS of Geoffrey Olholm and Matthew Sanders.

The sole Rookie Rallye entry of Wayne Lamont and Errol Rosenblatt (2012 Toyota 86) completed the day’s five stages.

For more information on key components of TARGA Great Barrier Reef and road closures, visit targa.com.au and download the Spectator GuideResults – Day 1 of 3 (Provisional)It’s Live Queensland Overall 
1 Tony Quinn/Brian Foster (2018 Nissan GT-R) 
2 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +24secs
3 Tony Seymour/Sandra Seymour (2013 Lotus Exige) +37s
4 Anthony Genocchio/Robert Horsfall (1983 Holden Commodore) +1min16s
5 Mark Griffith/Neill Woolley (2017 Mercedes A45) +1.24s

It’s Live Queensland GT Outright
1 Tony Quinn/Brian Foster (2018 Nissan GT-R) 
2 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +24s
3 Tony Seymour/Sandra Seymour (2013 Lotus Exige) +37s

Cairns Regional Council GT Production
1 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2010 Subaru WRX STi) 
2 Mark Griffith/Neill Woolley (2017 Mercedes A45) +1min0s
3 Steven Van Der Brug/Linda Rankine (2010 Subaru WRX STi) +1:10s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2
1 Paolo Buccini/Claire Buccini (2008 BMW 135i)
2 Ian Gough/Zahary Gough (1998 Nissan Skyline) +4mins:32s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4
1 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R)
2 Gregg Taylor/Craig Milich (2008 Subaru WRX) +1min:38s
3 Aaron Dunkerton/Alan Stean (2003 Mitsubishi Evo VIII) +1:49s

Shannons Classic (handicap)
1 Patrick Barnett/Katie Barnett (1979 Ford Cortina)
2 Tyrone Gilbert/Tania Wearing (1981 Mazda RX-7) +24secs

Shannons Classic GT
1 Anthony Genocchio/Robert Horsfall (1983 Holden Commodore)
2 Jon Siddins/Gina Siddins (1970 Datsun 240Z) +9secs
3 Stewart Reid/Jennifer Cole (1980 Ford Escort) +1min07s

Reef Hotel & Casino GT Sports Trophy
1 Geoffrey Olholm/Matthew Sanders (2019 Toyota Supra GTS)
2 Gwesyn Dalliston/Robert Goodwin (2003 Nissan 350Z Track) +1min08s
3 Warren Hendry/Mitchell Hendry (2020 Toyota Yaris) +1:26s

Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy
1 Timothy Hall/Kym Hall (1980 Holden Commodore)
2 Leo Rodriguez/Paul Frank (1988 Mazda RX-7) +1min:41s
3 Thomas English/Trent Vidler (1967 Holden HR Ute) +3m:12s

Cairns Regional Council TSD Trophy
=1 Darryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Falcon Pursuit 250) +3 points
=1 Agim Selita/Gezim Bashi (2011 BMW 135i M Sports) +3
3 Benjamin Brooksby/Rob Sheppard (2005 Mitsubishi Magna VRX) +4

Cairns & Great Barrier Reef Rookie Rallye
1 Wayne Lamont/Errol Rosenblatt (2012 Toyota 86)

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social Media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

02.09.2021

Seymour targets elusive podium

Thursday September 2, 2021

Brisbane Lotus pair Tony and Sandra Seymour are primed for redemption at the Cairns-based TARGA Great Barrier Reef starting this Friday (September 3).

One of the top fancies in the GT Outright class, the Seymours have left nothing to chance in their preparation for the fourth running of the critically acclaimed Tropical North Queensland event.

Tony Seymour believes he is better prepared to take on the Outright category in his 2013 Lotus Exige after a splendid run at TARGA Great Barrier Reef last year was spoiled by a mistake on the penultimate stage when he was momentarily second in overall standings.

“I’ve got a bit more experience now because last year in Cairns was my first event in the open class,” Seymour said, who made the large jump from the GT Sports Trophy category.

“I think we will be in a better position than last year.

“There were three in my class last year and I still didn’t manage to finish on the podium so you can’t take anything for granted.”

Seymour recounted the twists and turns that saw him tantalisingly close to a spot on the podium only to encounter a mishap on the 28.21km Palmerston run.

“It was the long stage and (Tony) Quinn (Nissan GT-R) was in front and then Luke Anear (Mercedes AMG GT R) was second and I was third,” Seymour said.

“Luke was in front of me and he went off and holed the radiator. So that put us up into second place.

“But he managed to get the car fixed which enabled him to get back to the finish and still take second.

“It was a strange turn of events because on Palmerston I was going along no problem then I made a costly mistake.

“It’s all a learning experience and we are hoping to be right up there again.”

Entries are up sharply across the 10 classes which number 130, compared with 83 last year.

Highlights of TARGA Great Barrier Reef 2021 include the TARGAcavalcade which features the entire field streaming through the northern suburbs of Cairns under police escort from 3.30pm-4.45pm on Friday, September 3.

The event will conclude with a new-look TARGAfest and official finish at Fogarty Park in the heart of Cairns from 3pm on Sunday, September 5.

TGBR is the opening round of the Motorsport Australia-sanctioned TARGA Championship which also embraces TARGA High Country from November 12-14 and the 30th anniversary TARGA Tasmania from March 8-13.

People are reminded that the Kuranda Range stage is scheduled to be the first stage on the Saturday (September 4) morning. This is a change from previous years when the Kuranda stage was held on Sunday morning.

For more information on key components of TGBR and road closures, visit targa.com.au and download the Spectator Guide.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social Media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

01.09.2021

Udy eyes TARGA Great Barrier Reef upset

Wayne Udy in action

Wednesday September 1, 2021

Whitsunday competitor Wayne Udy is angling to produce another barnstorming run when TARGA Great Barrier Reef gets underway this Friday.

Alongside co-driver Mia Williams, Udy almost pulled off one of the biggest upsets in tarmac rallying when the pair finished second overall at the Cairns-based event last year.

After three days of hard toil on the picturesque and demanding Tropical North Queensland roads, Udy and Williams were only bested by GTO Outright class favourites Tony Quinn and Brian Foster.

While the field was depleted due to COVID restrictions, the performance from Udy and Williams was outstanding given they had soared so highly in their GT Sports Trophy 2019 Lotus Exige 410 Sport machine.

Easily winning their class, the pair are confident of featuring prominently again in overall standings.

“There was a lot of pressure on us last year to perform and we proved we could do it,” Udy explained.

“So this year I’m going out to have a lot more fun. This year the pressure is off a little bit.”

“We are definitely going to aim to be up there in the overall standings again.

“We have only driven the Lotus twice since last year. It’s been sitting in the shed. I bought the car new and it’s only got 3500km on it so with the low mileage it should be pretty reliable.”

Quinn is strongly fancied to defend his TARGA Great Barrier Reef title from last year when he produced a clean run across the three days to prevail in the 2018 Nissan GT-R.

This year’s event has attracted 130 entries, despite the lingering COVID restrictions nationwide and is up from the 83 last year when the event defied the pandemic to stage a highly successful third edition of what has become a signature event on the TARGA calendar.

Highlights of TGBR 2021 include the TARGAcavalcade which features the entire field streaming through the northern suburbs of Cairns under police escort from 3.30pm-4.45pm on Friday, September 3.

The event will conclude with a new-look TARGAfest and official finish at Fogarty Park in the heart of Cairns from 3pm on Sunday, September 5.

TARGA Great Barrier Reef is the opening round of the Motorsport Australia-sanctioned TARGA Championship which also embraces TARGA High Country from November 12-14 and the 30th anniversary TARGA Tasmania from March 8-13 next year.

Please note that the Kuranda Range stage is scheduled to be the first stage on the Saturday (September 4) morning. This is a change from previous years when the Kuranda stage was held on Sunday morning.

For more information on key components of TGBR and road closures, visit targa.com.au and download the Spectator Guide.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

30.08.2021

TARGA ‘ray of sunshine’ for local economy

Monday August 30, 2021

Locals are breathing a sigh of relief that TARGA Great Barrier Reef will proceed as Cairns prepares to welcome Australia’s leading tarmac rally Championship this week, with the event running from September 3 to 5.

Amid lockdowns and disruptions to business and events nationwide, TARGA Great Barrier Reef has again shown its resilience during the pandemic.

Cairns business owner and avid TARGA competitor Murray Young cannot stress enough the importance the event has on tropical North Queensland which relies heavily on tourism.

“Tourism has been devastated in Cairns,” Young said.

“So for an event like TARGA to be able to proceed brings a ray of sunshine to the region in terms of an influx of teams and crews who will inject a lot of money into the local economy.

“It’s going to be a bit of a shot-in-the-arm with everyone buying the food, using the accommodation etc, so we can’t say enough how valuable TARGA is to our local community.

“I did a recce of the TARGA course yesterday and the region is absolutely spectacular. 

“From a competitors point of view, anyone who is doing this event this year, I can guarantee they will be back again and again.

“All the people coming to Cairns to do the TARGA Tours, they will be blown away by the roads and the scenery.”

The field size has risen by around 25 per cent from last year with 130 cars set to tackle the competitive stages around Cairns and the Atherton Tablelands as TARGA Great Barrier Reef’s reputation as a showpiece tarmac rally continues to flourish. 

There has been some modifications to the event structure as lockdowns interstate have restricted to essentially Queensland competitors.

Organisers have been forced to make the difficult decision to cancel the two proposed Super Special stages.

The Cairns showgrounds was to have staged a Super Special stage on Thursday, September 2, while Innisfail was scheduled to host a Super Special through the main part of town on Sunday, September 5.

“Unfortunately the COVID-19 restrictions has impacted on the number of competition cars this year, which in turn severely impacts the length of the show that we can put on as well as the amount of people that can attend,” TARGA chief executive Mark Perry explained.

“For street stages to work, you need a mass of cars to put on a show, so this year they are just not viable unfortunately. 

“However I want to thank the local councils for their support of the concept and hopefully we will see them in the near future.

“But we are really thrilled that the TARGA Cavalcade will happen again, which takes the cars to the suburbs, and we have implemented a new look on the final day (Sunday, September 5) with the TARGAfest and ceremonial finish at Fogarty Park.”

As previously announced, the Cavalcade is scheduled from 3.30pm-4.45pm on Friday, September 3.

There has also been a change to the Kuranda Range stage this year. This will now be run on Saturday, September 4. In previous years it has been staged on the Sunday. “

“People are reminded to plan ahead and check targa.com.au for all of the road closure times and information,” Perry said.

TARGA Great Barrier Reef is the opening round of the Motorsport Australia TARGA Championship that also includes Mt Buller in north-eastern Victoria for TARGA High Country from November 12-14 and finish with the landmark 30th anniversary of TARGA Tasmania from March 8-13.

For more information including important road closures during the upcoming event, visit targa.com.au

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

24.08.2021

TARGA CAVALCADE ROUTE CONFIRMED

TARGA Cavalcade

24th of August, 2021

The Cairns public will be treated to an amazing array of machinery with the route for the TARGACavalcade revealed as TARGA Great Barrier Reef returns to Tropical North Queensland from September 3 to 5.

Following on from its incredibly successful introduction at last year’s event, the Cavalcade (see attached map) will set off from Cairns city and trek north toward the airport before heading inland to capture key northern suburbs.

The route will embrace a wide sweep of northern Cairns that will see the stars and cars, under police escort, embrace Aeroglen, Stratford, Freshwater, Kamerunga, the historic Redlynch before concluding at Brinsmead.

The Cavalcade is scheduled from 3.30pm-4.45pm on the afternoon of Friday the 3rd of September.

TARGA CEO Mark Perry said the Cavalcade had connected the Cairns community to the motorsport event and was a highlight for both the competitors and the public with around $12 million worth of high-performance vehicles cruises through the suburbs.

“The Cairns public turned out in their thousands last year asthey lined the route in a huge show of support for TARGAthat defied the COVID-19 shutdowns across the country,” he said.

Release of the route follows finalisation of the course for TARGA Great Barrier Reef which acts as the opening round of the Motorsport Australia TARGA Championship. The Championship also embraces TARGA High Country in north-eastern Victoria set for November 12-14 and the showpiece TARGA Tasmania which will assume a new date from March 8-13 next year for its 30th anniversary.

For more information on TARGA Great Barrier Reef and important road closure information visit targa.com.au

For further Information, please contact 

Liz Inglis, 0419 643 494

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

24.04.2021

Tragic end to Targa Tasmania

Saturday 24th April, 2021

TARGA Tasmania has been struck with tragedy for a second successive day.

A double fatality occurred 6.2km into the Cygnet 1 stage.

A 2019 Porsche 911 GT3 RS was involved in an accident with both driver Leigh Mundy and co-driver Dennis Neagle killed after the car hit a tree.

Medical teams arrived at the scene but both occupants could not be saved.

“This has been a devastating few days for the Targa family,” said Mark Perry, TARGA Australia chief executive.

“Today our thoughts and deepest condolences go to Leigh and Dennis’ family and friends.

“Both loved Targa and we knew them so well, which makes their passing so difficult for everyone in our community.

“They will be sorely missed by us all.”

Organisers downgraded the stages to touring at 12.17 pm.

It left Eddie Maguire and Zak Brakey as the winners of the Dutton Garage Overall category in their 2016 Dodge Viper.

Maguire and Brakey ran at the front on all six days, ending with a one minute 57 second win over Angus Kennard and Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R).

Running at the front on all six days, Maguire withstood a pressure-packed event to win the Dutton Garage Overall class alongside co-driver Zak Brakey in their 2016 Dodge Viper.

The all-Tasmanian crew managed to win 12 of the event’s 37 stages across more than 600km of stages. Angus Kennard and Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) were one minute 57 seconds behind in second.

“It’s not the feeling we thought we’d get as we had been working 30 years for this,” Maguire said.

“I was my son Hunter’s age (four) when the first TARGA Tasmania was on and it has been a dream to win this since then.

“It’s great to do it with Zak (Brakey) who is a good mate. We went to primary school together.

“My service crew, mum and dad and Jason White have been amazing. I wouldn’t be here if it wasn’t for Jason, he’s a great mentor.

“I also want to offer my condolences to the family and friends of the people we have lost yesterday and today.

Trevor Macleod and Steve Glenney topped the opening two stages of the final day to finish third overall in their 2009 Nissan GT-R.

Maguire and Brakey also topped Dutton Garage GT Outright standings.

Macleod and Glenney took Dutton Garage Early Modern 4 by more than 16 minutes. 

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 was won convincingly by Adam Kaplan and Aleshia Penney (2004 BMW M3 CSL).

Queenslanders Jon and Gina Siddins were never headed in Shannons Classic GT, the pair guiding their 1970 Datsun 240Z six minutes 31 seconds clear of second-placed Stephen Thatcher and Phillip Parker (1989 Nissan Skyline) 

Ashley Yelds and Mary Hughes were untouchable throughout, claiming Shannons Classic Handicap by 11 minutes 35 seconds in their beautifully prepared 1961 Volvo 122S.

A raging battle continued to the end in Classic Throttle Shop GT Production with Stephen Maguire, brother of Eddie, prevailing by 18 seconds in the 2011 Mitsubishi Evo X he shared with Stuart Benson.

In one of the most hotly contested categories, Tyler Page and Ryan Sheenan (2007 Subaru WRX) took honours in Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye by a slender eight seconds.

Queenslanders Darryl and Peter Marshall were never headed after completing a solid campaign in their 2002 Ford Pursuit Ute to dominate Budget TSD Trophy. The Marshalls were only docked a total of 15 points with their nearest challengers, Christopher Waldock and Cristine Kirby (2016 Jaguar F-Type) finishing on 60 points.

Jack Waldron and Graham Mitchell powered to victory in Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy in their 1981 Mitsubishi Sigma, claiming the category by 12 minutes 25 seconds.

In Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy, Matthew Gibbens and Timothy Jurd (2020 Exige 410) prevailed by just over one minute from Stephen Sher and Fergal Murphy (2016 Lotus Exige).

TARGA Tasmania 2021 Day 6 of 6 results (provisional)

Dutton Garage Overall
1 Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR)
2 Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) +1:57s
3 Trevor Macleod/Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) +2:37s
4 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) +6:53s
5 Jeff Morton/Daymon Nicoli (2019 Porsche GT2 RS) +11:53s
6 Stephen Maguire/Stuart Benson (2011 Mitsubishi Evo X) +15:05s

Dutton Garage GT Outright

1 Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR)
2 Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) +1:57s
3 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) +6:53s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4
1 Trevor Macleod/Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R)
2 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) +16:18s
3 Guy Lilleyman/John Lilleyman (2006 Mitsubishi Evo IX) +18:13s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2
1 Adam Kaplan/Aleshia Penney (2004 BMW M3 CSL)
2 Peter Roberts/Suzanne Atkins (1992 Nissan Skyline GTS-1) +7:03s
3 Adam Spence/Lee Challoner-Miles (2004 BMW M3 CSL) +7:06s

Classic Throttle Shop GT Production
1 Stephen Maguire/Stuart Benson (2011 Mitsubishi Evo X) 
2 Peter Nunn/Keith Johnstone (2016 Porsche Cayman GTS) +18s
3 Crichton Lewis/Anthony Carr (2015 Subaru WRX STi) +1:48s

 Shannons Classic GT
1 Jon Siddins/Gina Siddins (1970 Datsun 240Z)
2 Stephen Thatcher/Phillip Parker (1989 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +6:31s
3 Stuart McAuley/Philippe Etienne (1985 Porsche 911 Carrera) +7:23s

Shannons Classic Handicap
1 Ashley Yelds/Mary Hughes (1960 Volvo 122S)
2 Peter Ullrich/Sari Ullrich (1964 Studebaker Avanti) +11:25s
3 Bruce Power/Russell Hannah (1979 Mazda RX-7) +13:16s

Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy
1 Matthew Gibbens/Timothy Jurd (2020 Lotus Exige 410)
2 Stephen Sher/Fergal Murphy (2016 Lotus Exige) +1:03s
3 Robert Bryden/Ian Noble (2020 Lotus Exige) +2:05s

 Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy
1 Jack Waldron/Graham Mitchell (1981 Mitsubishi Sigma)
2 John Stanton/John Blake (1981 Porsche 924 Turbo) +12:25s
3 David Currow/Kate O’Donnell (1969 Fiat 124 AC) +50:16s

Budget TSD Trophy
1 Darryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Pursuit Ute) 15 points
2 Christopher Waldock/Cristine Kirby (2016 Jaguar F-Type SVR) 60 points
3 Michael Graver/Nicholas Graver (2020 BMW M340i) 86 points

Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye
1 Tyler Page/Ryan Sheehan (2007 Subaru WRX)
2 Anthony Seymour/Sandra Seymour( 2018 Lotus Exige) +08s
3 Stuart Collison/Lance Arundel (2006 Subaru WRX STi) +6:53s

24.04.2021

Further statement from Targa Australia

Saturday, 24th of April, 2021

Sadly there has been double fatality after a crash on the Cygnet stage of TARGA Tasmania.

A 2019 Porsche 911 GT3 RS (Car 902) hit a tree 6.2 kilometres into the stage at approximately 11:45am this morning. 

Medical and emergency teams were immediately dispatched to attend the scene of the accident but were unable to revive both the driver Leigh Mundy, and co-driver Dennis Neagle, who died at the scene.

The stages were downgraded at 12:17pm to touring only and competitors returned to the finish at PW1 in Hobart.

Targa Australia CEO, Mark Perry, said:

“This has been a devastating few days for the Targa family.

Today our thoughts and deepest condolences go to Leigh and Dennis’ family and friends.

Both loved Targa and we knew them so well, which makes their passing so difficult for everyone in our community.

They will be sorely missed by us all.”

As this is now a coronial matter, there will be no further statement from Targa Australia.

24.04.2021

STATEMENT FROM TARGA AUSTRALIA

TARGA Tasmania confirms there has been a serious accident on the Cygnet Stage and Police have closed the road and are in attendance at the scene.

Further details will be released as available.

24.04.2021

TARGA Tasmania continues after tragic day

Targa Australia is deeply saddened to report a fatal crash on the Mt Arrowsmith stage on day 5 of TARGA Tasmania.

A 1979 Mazda RX-7 of Shane Navin and co-driver Glenn Evans crashed 35.4 kilometres into the stage at approximately 10am yesterday morning. 

Medical teams were immediately dispatched to attend the scene of the accident but were unable to revive Shane, who died at the scene.

Co-driver Glenn Evans, was assessed by the attending medical crew and cleared of injuries.

Targa Australia CEO, Mark Perry, said:

“This is a very sad time for the Targa community. Shane was a much loved and admired member of our Targa family. We send our heartfelt condolences to Shane’s family and friends on their loss.”

Targa organisers made the considered decision to continue with the event.

At the front of the field, Eddie Maguire edged closer to overall victory in TARGA Tasmania.

On the arrival of the field in Hobart, Maguire and co-driver Zak Brakey had a one minute 59 seconds lead.

Maguire claimed four of the day’s six timed stages with one day remaining.

Angus Kennard and Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) took a big chunk out of the overall lead by topping the 52.51km Mount Arrowsmith stage before Maguire responded to top the final three stages of the day.

Trevor Macleod and Steve Glenney are two minutes and 51 seconds back in third overall.

Maguire and Brakey also lead the Dutton Garage GTO standings by the same margin from Kennard/Wheeler with Tony Quinn and Kate Catford third.

Macleod and Glenney have a decisive lead in Dutton Garage Early Modern 4. The pair are 14 minutes 59 seconds ahead.

In Dutton Garage Early Modern 2, Adam Kaplan and Aleshia Penney (2004 BMW M3 CSL) hold a six minutes 56 second advantage.

Jon and Gina Siddins (1970 Datsun 240Z) have proved the class of the Shannons Classic GT field all week and go into the final day with a decent six minutes 18 second lead.

Ashley Yelds and Mary Hughes (1961 Volvo 122s) have gone further ahead in Shannons Classic Handicap after their nearest rivals Steve McClintock and Jann Skinner went off on the morning’s first stage (Strahan) in their 1972 BMW 2002. Peter and Sari Ullrich are second more than eleven minutes adrift.

The Classic Throttle Shop GT Production category has seen an epic battle with the lead chopping and changing. Peter Nunn and Keith Johnstone (2016 Porsche Cayman GTS) finished the day with a one second lead over Stephen Maguire and Stuart Benson (2011 Mitsubishi Evo X).

Jack Waldron and Graham Mitchell look untouchable in Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy, leading the way in their 1981 Mitsubishi Sigma by 12 minutes and 5 seconds.

Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy remains a tight affair with Matthew Gibbens and Timothy Jurd leading by 54 seconds.

Another close battle continues in Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye with Tyler Page and Ryan Sheehan (2007 Subaru WRX S204) clutching an eight second lead over Tony and Sandra Seymour (2013 Lotus Exige).

Queenslanders Darryl and Peter Marshall have all but sewn-up the Budget TSD Trophy category in their 2002 Ford Pursuit Ute with 37point lead.

The 29th Targa Tasmania concludes today with a further eight stages before finishing back PW1 in Hobart around 1:30pm.

23.04.2021

Further Statement from TARGA Australia

There has been a fatal crash on the Mt Arrowsmith stage of TARGA Tasmania.
A 1979 Mazda RX7 rolled 35.4 kilometres into the stage at approximately 10am this morning. 
Medical teams were immediately dispatched to attend the scene of the accident but were unable to revive the driver, Shane Navin, who died at the scene.

The second occupant of the car, co-driver Glenn Evans, was assessed by the attending medical crew and has no injuries.

Targa Australia CEO, Mark Perry, said:
“This is a very sad time for the Targa community. Shane was a much loved and admired member of our Targa family. We send our heartfelt condolences to Shane’s family and friends on their loss.”
There will be no further statement from Targa Australia as this is now a coronial matter.

23.04.2021

TARGA Australia update

TARGA Tasmania confirms there has been a serious accident on the Mt Arrowsmith Stage and Police have closed the road and are in attendance at the scene.

Further details will be released when they become available.

22.04.2021

WHAT THEY SAID | DAY FOUR

Photo Credit: Wishart Media

EDDIE MAGUIRE (leading Dutton Garage overall and GTO): “Today was great – a pretty relaxing day all up.

We’ve just been doing our thing and staying consistent.

We won every stage today except for Gunns Plains and Reece Dam.

The temperature on our tyres came up too much on that stage and we had to nurse them and back off a bit.

The weather so far has really helped our tyres.

They’re looking great – in fact, much better than I thought they would on Day Four, but there’s still long way to go.”

ANGUS KENNARD (second Dutton Garage overall and GTO): “Eddie’s got a great lead, but it’s a great fight for second, third, and fourth.

We haven’t given up trying to catch Eddie yet.

It’s such a long event and anything can happen, so you just have to keep going.

We are going really hard and not holding anything back at this stage.”

SHANE JACOBSON (Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy): “I’m absolutely loving it so far.

The best thing of all is that we’re still on the road and that’s one of the main objectives in an event like this.

We’re feeling like winners on every stage and still smiling.

We’re driving to the conditions, which I think is probably a wise thing.

We’re not trying to win a trophy – we’re just trying to get around.

I’m getting more confident with the car, but I’ve got someone in the left hand seat (navigator Naomi Tillett) keeping me in check.

When the red mist descends, she brings it back to amber for me.

DARRYL  MARSHALL (Budget TSD Trophy): “The change in Hellyer Gorge caught us out a little bit, as the finish line was moved and it threw our calculations out a bit, but to come through the day with only losing two points isn’t a bad result considering.

It was a much shorter stage and one we haven’t properly recced in the past.”

JACK WALDRON (Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy): “This is probably the biggest lead I’ve had on Day Four so far.

The car’s been really good, apart from a small electrical problem which is plaguing us at the moment.

I’m going to try a different alternator.

It’s fairly tough out there – it’s wet and slippery, but my car is easy to drive, so we’re enjoying it enormously.”

MATTHEW GIBBENS (Spiriti of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy): “We’re happy to be in the lead, but now we’re just trying to protect it for the next couple of days.

Hopefully tomorrow we will get some dry conditions.

We’ve been getting used to the car in the wet as well and winning some stages, but it’s safer and more predictable when it’s dry.”

TYLER PAGE (Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye): “We inherited the lead from Tony (Seymour) when he copped a penalty today, so it was good for us.

We are still learning every day – we had never driven the car in the wet until The Sideling (Day Two).

It’s been a big learning curve and every day we’re just been getting faster and faster in the wet.

Tony’s penalty makes up for the time we lost in the wet early on, but now we’re got a real battle on our hands head to head with Tony.”

GINA SIDDINS (Shannons Classic GT): “I had a bit of a crack in a couple of stages today, which is why we may have lost a bit of time.

It was really good to be behind the wheel and Jon was pretty good on navigation – he’s a better driver though.

He’s always told me how to drive, but he’s been a great mentor with my racing.

Jon’s very happy with the lead we still have.”

ADAM KAPLAN (Dutton Garage Early Modern 2): “We’re surprised to be in front by as much as we are, because we’ve just been taking it relatively easy and having fun.

The car’s been brilliant with no issues whatsoever.

The only difficulty for us is trying to work out which suspension setting to use.

We’re happy with our progress so far.”

TREVOR MACLEOD (Dutton Garage Early Modern 4): “We’re happy to be leading our class after we had some issues with a computer fault which put the car in limp mode, but we think we’ve sorted it out.

We’ll keep pushing and maybe get ourselves back into an outright podium position as well.

ASHLEY YELDS (Shannons Classic): “We’ve had a few fuel problems today, but still managed to hang on to our lead.

This is a very competitive class, so we’re very conscious of needing to keep our pace going.

We’re not content with our gap at this stage, especially when someone can take 28 seconds off us in one stage.”

PETER NUNN (Classic Throttle Shop GT Production): “It’s unfortunate Ben had to head home, but Steve Maguire is making ground on us in leaps and bounds now.

He’s pulled a bit on us today, so it’s going to be a good battle.

Our car’s been better in the wet that it was yesterday after we made a few changes and gained some confidence along the way.”

STEVE MAGUIRE (GT Production): “We made a few suspension changes today and that gave us a bit more confidence in the wet.

We’re having a good battle with Peter Nunn.

He seems to be doing quite well in the dry and we’re not too bad in the wet.

Tuesday was the first time I’d ever driven in the wet in a tarmac rally, so it was quite challenging, but we’re having heaps of fun now.

I’ve done plenty of gravel rallying in the wet, but no tarmac.”

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

22.04.2021

Maguire turns up wick on TARGA Tasmania assault

Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey on Day 4. (Photo: Otherside Productions/Wishart Media) 

Thursday 22nd April, 2021

Eddie Maguire and Zak Brakey have turned in an electrifying performance to dominate day four of TARGA Tasmania.

On a day of largely wet conditions, Maguire aced four of the six stages in his potent 2016 Dodge Viper in a blistering display around Tasmania’s north-west.

The Burnie flyer has now forged a two minute 23 second lead in overall standings. Angus Kennard and Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) have moved into second with Trevor Mcleod and Steve Glenney third.

Maguire also tops the Dutton Garage GTO leaderboard from Kennard and Wheeler with Tony Quinn and Kate Catford third in their 2018 Nissan GT-R.

“We’ve just been doing our thing and staying consistent,” Maguire said. “We won every stage today except for Gunns Plains and the last one, Reece Dam.

“The temperature on our tyres came up too much on that stage and we had to nurse them and back off a bit.

“The weather so far has really helped our tyres. They’re looking great – in fact, much better than I thought they would on day four, but there’s still a long way to go.”

Kennard is still pushing hard hoping for a first overall win at TARGA Tasmania.

“We haven’t given up trying to catch Eddie yet’” Kennard said.

“It’s such a long event and anything can happen, so you just have to keep going. We are going really hard and not holding anything back at this stage.”

Another GT Outright contender, Jeff Morton and Daymon Nicoli, who starred by winning the first two stages on Day 3, pushed hard today but remain in fifth position overall.

An electronic glitch with their gearbox knocked the shine off an otherwise solid performance by Macleod and Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) but the pair still hold a big lead in Dutton Garage Early Modern 4 by more than 11 minutes.

Macleod and Glenney put in a sterling run to record the fastest time by 13 seconds over Maguire and Brakey on the 14.77km Gunns Plains stage.

Adam Kaplan and Aleshia Penney continue to show the way in Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 ahead of Peter Roberts and Suzanne Atkins. Adam Spence and Lee Challoner-Miles have jumped back into third after a time penalty on their 2004 BMW M3 CSL was withdrawn.

Jon and Gina Siddins are pressing on with a sublime performance to dominate the pace in Shannons Classic GT in their popular 1970 Datsun 240Z. Gina Siddins has swapped seats, driving a couple of stages with Jon calling the notes.

The Siddins have increased their lead by five minutes and 23 seconds.

Ashley Yelds and Mary Hughes (1961 Volvo 122s), who stopped to offer assistance to a fellow competitor who had spun in TS 19, were given a derived time and maintain the top of the table in Shannons Classic Handicap.

Peter Nunn and Keith Johnstone have taken over the lead of Classic Throttle Shop GT Production following the unfortunate withdrawal of Ben Newman/Adam Kudra for personal reasons.

Nunn/Johnstone have a two minutes 19 second break over Crichton Lewis/Anthony Carr (2015 Subaru WRX STi).

Day four saw a change of lead in Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye with Tyler Page and Ryan Sheehan (2007 Subaru WRX) taking over from previous front-runners Tony and Sandra Seymour (2018 Lotus Exige).

Darryl and Peter Marshall are putting on a clinic by extending their gap in the time-speed-distance and penalty points-based Budget TSD Trophy. The Marshalls are now 31 points clear.

Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy is a one-act affair with Jack Waldren and Graham Mitchell forging a huge 10 minutes 44 second lead over John Stanton/John Blake (1981 Porsche 924 Turbo).

Matthew Gibbens and Timothy Jurd (2020 Lotus Exige 410) maintain the top position in Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy, one minute 54 seconds over Stephen Sher/Fergal Murphy’s 2016 Lotus Exige.

The penultimate day of the rally takes cars from Strahan down into Hobart with a further 116 competitive kilometres.

TARGA Tasmania 2021 Day 4 of 6 results (provisional)

Dutton Garage Overall
1 Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR) 
2 Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) +2m:23s
3 Trevor Macleod/Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) +3:29s
4 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) +3:57s
5 Jeff Morton/Daymon Nicoli (2019 Porsche GT2 RS) +7:16s
6 Peter Nunn/Keith Johnstone (2016 Porsche Cayman GTS) +10:32s

Dutton Garage GT Outright
1 Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR)
2 Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) +2m:23s
3 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) +3:57s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4
1 Trevor Macleod/Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) 
2 Jason Wright/Fiona Wright (2001 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +11m:07s
3 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) +11.13s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2
1 Adam Kaplan/Aleshia Penney (2004 BMW M3 CSL)
2 Peter Roberts/Suzanne Atkins (1992 Nissan Skyline GTS-1) +4m:20s
3 Adam Spence/Lee Challoner-Miles (2004 BMW M3 CSL) +4:45s

Classic Throttle Shop GT Production
1 Peter Nunn/Keith Johnstone (2016 Porsche Cayman GTS) 
2 Stephen Maguire/Stuart Benson (2011 Mitsubishi Evo X) +35s
3 Crichton Lewis/Anthony Carr (2015 Subaru WRX STi) +2:19s

 Shannons Classic GT
1 Jon Siddins/Gina Siddins (1970 Datsun 240Z)
2 Stuart McAuley/Philippe Etienne (1985 Porsche 911 Carrera) +5m:23s
3 Stephen Thatcher/Phillip Parker (1989 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +6:08s 

Shannons Classic Handicap
1 Ashley Yelds/Mary Hughes (1960 Volvo 122S)
2 Steve McClintock/Jann Skinner (1972 BMW 2002) +4m:11s
3 Peter Ullrich/Sari Ullrich (1964 Studebaker Avanti) +6:09s

 Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy
1 Matthew Gibbens/Timothy Jurd (2020 Lotus Exige 410)
2 Stephen Sher/Fergal Murphy (2016 Lotus Exige) +1m:54s
3 Robert Bryden/Ian Noble (2020 Lotus Exige) +2:35s

Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy
1 Jack Waldren/Graham Mitchell (1981 Mitsubishi Sigma) 
2 John Stanton/John Blake (1981 Porsche 924 Turbo) +10m:44s
3 David Currow/Kate O’Donnell (1969 Fiat 124 AC) +41.41s 

Budget TSD Trophy
1 Darryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Pursuit Ute) 11 points
2 Christopher Waldock/Cristine Kirby (2016 Jaguar F-Type SVR) 42 points
3 Neville Emond/Stephen Jones (1996 Volvo 850R) 71 points

Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye
1 Tyler Page/Ryan Sheehan (2007 Subaru WRX) 
2 Anthony Seymour/Sandra Seymour( 2018 Lotus Exige) +4m:10s
3 Murray Young/Paul McBean (2012 BMW M3) +13:06s

Jeff Morton/Daymon Nicoli in his 2019 Porsche GT2 RS (Otherside Productions/Wishart Media)

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

21.04.2021

What they said | day three

We gathered some quotes and insider knowledge from a number of our competitors.

EDDIE MAGUIRE (Dutton Garage Overall and GTO): “We’ve been taking it pretty easy today. We’ve just got to get to the finish by conserving our lead.

If we can gain a bit of time in a safe manner, then we will, but it’s still about conserving tyres for us.

We had a very easy run over Cethana this morning because it’s hard on tyres, but we had a bit of a go in Oldina, but we’re not taking any risks.”

TREVOR McLEOD (Dutton Garage Early Modern 4): “Eddie’s going very well and we might struggle to make up the gap. I’m just driving to my abilities and not going overboard.

We’re not concerned about who’s in front of us and who’s behind – we’re just playing our own game.”

TONY QUINN (Dutton Garage GTO): “I’ve just been taking it as it comes and driving theroad.

Everybody’s been adjusting tyre pressures and suspension settings.

I haven’t touched the car at all.

I learnt from the great Jim Richards to just fill up the car in the morning and at lunch and keep it on the road in between.

I honestly don’t think a few clicks on the suspension or a bit of an adjustment makes that noticeable of a difference.

Every stage is different.”

DARRYL MARSHALL (Budget TSD Trophy)This is our equal best day at Targa Tasmania.

We’ve had a one-point day before and we were hoping to lose zero today, but we didn’t get it quite right in Cethana this morning.

Today was just one of those days we really like with long stages and easier stages.
It was great to get some dry weather after yesterday.

The dry weather really helps, especially with the ute.”

JACK WALDRON (Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy): “Everything’s working fairly well.

They’ve been wet days and the other guys have probably slowed down a little, whereas this car’s easy to drive in the wet conditions.

The last few days have been really good for us and I’ve enjoyed it.”

MATTHEW GIBBENS (Spirit of Tasmani GT Sports Trophy): “We’re getting more used to the wet conditions, but we were really pleased to see the dry conditions in the early stages this morning.

The car’s handling exceptionally well in both the dry and the wet, so I’m happy with that and we’re working better as a team, so we’re feeling more confident as the event goes on.”

ANTHONY SEYMOUR (Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye): “We’re very lucky to still be in front and very happy to still be in front. The conditions were treacherous yesterday, but today it’s been okay.

We haven’t had any dramas and any moments yet, so that’s a good thing.”

JON SIDDINS (Shannons Classic GT): “We’ve got a bit of a lead now, so we could afford to cruise through the last stage today.

Our plan for the rest of the week is now to defend the lead and not try too much to extend it.

As Jack Brabham used to say, ‘you’ve only got to win by one second’.”

ADAM KAPLAN (Dutton Garage Early Modern 2): “We’re happy with our progress so far.

We’re not pushing too hard and we have a nice lead for now. We’ll just push on when it feels good and slow down when it doesn’t. We just look at the conditions at the start of each stage and just decide whether it’s a time to go hard or not.

It’s not about winning for us, it’s about having fun – and beating the Porsches.”

ASHLEY YELDS (Shannons Classic Handicap): “The lead we have today is just brilliant – we didn’t expect to be that far in front.

We thought it was going to be dry today, so we had to push really hard on the dry stages this morning, because this class is such an even and competitive competition.

We’re not content with the lead we’ve got and there’s still a lot of work to do.”

PETER NUNN (Classic Throttle Shop GT Production): “ Today was a mixed bag after Day One suited us and Day Two suited Ben (Newman). He did well through Cethana and then we had a good run through Oldina.

I expect to lose a bit of time to him when it’s wet, so the weather could play a part.

We’re just pushing when we feel good and backing off when we don’t.”

BEN NEWMAN (Classic Throttle Shop GT Production): “We were happy to be quickest over Cethana, and we built up a nice buffer, but we had a brake issue on Oldina, so we lost 30 seconds.

We put some new pads on and we didn’t bed them in properly, so they glazed up and caused a huge vibration and didn’t stop the car too well.

We’ve put the original pads back in, so we’ll see what happens.

That’s the ups and downs of Targa Tasmania – we’d like a bigger gap in case it dries out.”

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

21.04.2021

Maguire boosts targa Tasmania lead but challengers linger

Ed Maguire in his Dodge Viper after Day 3. (Photo: Otherside Productions/Wishart Media)

Wednesday 21st April, 2021

Local driver Ed Maguire is closing on his maiden TARGA Tasmania overall victory after a solid run through the third day.

At the completion of the 17th TARGA stage, Maguire and co-driver Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper) managed to increase their overall lead to a neat two minutes at the half way mark of the event.

Trevor Macleod and Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) continued their strong push to be second overall with Angus Kennard and Ian Wheeler in close attendance in third place, just another 13 seconds back in their 2015 GT-R.

With two-time winner Tony Quinn and Kate Catford (2019 Nissan GT-R) just 11 seconds further in arrears, the push for a podium position is intense. 

“I’ve just been taking it as it comes and driving the road,” Quinn said. “Everybody’s been adjusting tyre pressures and suspension settings but I haven’t touched the car at all.

“I learnt from the great Jim Richards to just fill up the car in the morning and at lunch and keep it on the road in between.”

A star performer early on was Jeff Morton and Daymon Nicoli (2019 Porsche GT2 RS), the pair surging to stage wins on Cethana (TS 13) and Castra (TS 14) in their 2019 Porsche 911 GT2 RS before Maguire ended that streak by taking his fourth stage win of the event on Oldina (TS 15). 

As Hellyer Gorge 1 (TS 16) was downgraded to a transport stage, it left the 34.75km Rinadeena test to close proceedings for the day. The final stage of the day was won by Kennard and Wheeler.

“We’ve been taking it pretty easy today,” Maguire admitted. “We’ve just got to get to the finish by conserving our lead.” 

“If we can gain a bit of time in a safe manner, then we will, but it’s still about conserving tyres for us.

“We had a very easy run over Cethana this morning because it’s hard on tyres.”

Maguire and Brakey also lead the Dutton Garage GTO leaderboard by two minutes 13 seconds ahead of Kennard and Wheeler with Tony Quinn and Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) third.

In other class news, Macleod and Glenney have surged to a decisive lead in Dutton Garage Early Modern 4, six minutes 34 seconds clear of Larry and Liam Howarth’s 1995 Nissan GT-R.

Adam Kaplan and Aleshia Penney (2004 BMW M3 CSL) have maintained a strong pace to protect their lead in Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 by just over three minutes. 

Jon and Gina Siddins are showing their experience by continuing a mistake-free showing to lead Shannons Classic GT in their 1970 Datsun 240Z. The Gold Coast pair moved to a three minute, 16 second advantage.

“Our plan for the rest of the week is now to defend the lead and not try too much to extend it – as Jack Brabham used to say, you’ve only got to win by one second,” Jon Siddins said

There has been no change to the top of Shannons Classic Handicap as Ashley Yelds and Mary Hughes (1961 Volvo 122s) hold station at the top of the category standings. The Volvo pair lead by just over two minutes.

In the hotly contested Classic Throttle Shop GT Production, Ben Newman and Adam Kudra (2010 Subaru WRX STi) hold a one minute 13 second advantage over Peter Nunn and Keith Johnstone (2016 Porsche Cayman GTS).

Daryl and Peter Marshall have been ultra consistent in the time, speed and distance category (Budget TSD Trophy) to lead by 14 points. The Marshalls only dropped two penalty points for the day.

Matthew Gibbens and Timothy Jurd (2020 Lotus Exige 410) are locked in a tight battle in Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy.

The pair are just under two minutes in front of Stephen Sher and Fergal Murphy ((2016 Lotus Exige) with Robert Bryden and Ian Noble’s Lotus Exige a further two seconds back.

Jack Waldron and Graham Mitchell maintain a big five minutes 12 second in Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy.

Queenslanders Tony and Sandra Seymour have a comfortable buffer in Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye, guiding their 2013 Lotus Exige to a three minute 35 second lead.

The field travels from Strahan to Penguin and back, which includes another scheduled six stages, including the demanding Riana and Reece Dam tests.

TARGA Tasmania 2021 Day 3 of 6 results (provisional)

Dutton Garage Overall
1 Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR) 
2 Trevor Macleod/Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) +2 minutes
3 Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) +2:13s
4 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) +2:24s
5 Jeff Morton/Daymon Nicoli (2019 Porsche GT2 RS) +3:32s
6 Peter Rullo/Dennis Sims (2020 Lotus Exige TARGA GT) +3:45s

Dutton Garage GT Outright
1 Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR)
2 Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) +2min:13sec
3 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) +2:24s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4
1 Trevor Macleod/Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) 
2 Liam Howarth/Larry Howarth (1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +6min:34sec
3 Jason Wright/Fiona Wright (2001 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +7:14s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2
1 Adam Kaplan/Aleshia Penney (2004 BMW M3 CSL)
2 Peter Roberts/Suzanne Atkins (1992 Nissan Skyline GTS-1) +3min:10sec
3 Paul Henry/Katherine Henry (2006 Porsche Cayman S) +4:26s

Classic Throttle Shop GT Production
1 Ben Newman/Adam Kudra (2010 Subaru WRX STi)
2 Peter Nunn/Keith Johnstone (2016 Porsche Cayman GTS) +1min:13sec
3 Steve Maguire/Stuart Benson (2011 Mitsubishi Evo X) +2:10s

Shannons Classic GT
1 Jon Siddins/Gina Siddins (1970 Datsun 240Z)
2 Stuart McAuley/Philippe Etienne (1985 Porsche 911 Carrera) +3min:16secs
3 Stephen Thatcher/Phillip Parker (1989 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +4:54s

Shannons Classic Handicap
1 Ashley Yelds/Mary Hughes (1960 Volvo 122S)
2 Steve McClintock/Jann Skinner (1972 BMW 2002) +2min:08secs
3 Peter Ullrich/Sari Ullrich (1964 Studebaker Avanti) +3:50s

Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy
1 Matthew Gibbens/Timonthy Jurd (2020 Lotus Exige 410)
2 Stephen Sher/Fergal Murphy (2016 Lotus Exige) +1min:57secs
3 Robert Bryden/Ian Noble (2020 Lotus Exige) +1:59s

Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy
1 Jack Waldren/Graham Mitchell (1981 Mitsubishi Sigma) 
2 John Stanton/John Blake (1981 Porsche 924 Turbo) +5min:12secs.
3 David Currow/Kate O’Donnell (1969 Fiat 124 AC) +33:42s

Budget TSD Trophy
1 Daryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Pursuit Ute) 10 points
2 Christopher Waldock/Cristine Kirby (2016 Jaguar F-Type SVR) 24 points
3 Neville Emond/Stephen Jones (1996 Volvo 850R) 45 points

Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye
1 Anthony Seymour/Sandra Seymour( 2018 Lotus Exige) 
2 Tyler Page/Ryan Sheehan (2007 Subaru WRX) +3min:35secs
3 Stuart Collison/Lance Arundel (2006 Subaru WRX STi Spec c) +6:50s

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

21.04.2021

WHAT THEY SAID | DAY TWO

Photo Credit: Wishart Media

Our field reporter caught up with some of the competitors at the finish of the final stage of Day 2.

Ed Maguire (Dutton Garage Overall and GTO):  “Jason (White)’s accident today was very unfortunate, but we’ve also had a few dramas of our own today.

We had a wheel-speed sensor fail on the first transport stage, so we had no ABS for The Sideling, and in this weather and this car, it’s quite un-drive-able in those conditions.

We got that rectified straight after and we’ve been cruising through a bit today in the wet.

Today has been the worst tarmac conditions I’ve ever driven in and I reckon all that gravel rally experience has come into play today.”

Trevor Macleod (Dutton Garage Early Modern 4): “The weather today has been kind to us, so we’ve been having fun in it.

We’ve got a definite advantage in the wet and I’ve been picking up speed as we go along.

Steve (co-driver Glenney) has been tweaking the car early on and got the setting right, so we’re really happy with it.

It’s great to have someone like Steve alongside. It gets you up to speed fairly quickly.

We’ve done a couple of other events together, but this is our first TARGA Tasmania as a team.

It’s great to be back at Targa Tasmania after no event last year and that it’s been dry has helped ensure the first day isn’t too stressful.

Tony Quinn (Dutton Garage GTO): “We’ve been doing those roads for years, but it was very wet today and a very tricky situation for everyone. The conditions suit all-wheel-drive cars like ours, but the tyre technology these days is pretty good, so the advantage we’ve had in the past is not as significant.

There’s still a long way to go, so anything can happen.

Adam Kaplan (Dutton Garage Early Modern 2): “I’m pretty happy with our efforts today. It’s been really good today.

There’s some experienced drivers behind us so there’s plenty of competition in our class.

The roads have been quite slippery, but it’s been fun.

There were a few sprinkles of rain, but it didn’t worry us at all.

The car’s going really well and we haven’t changed a thing from last time, apart from new stickers on the back.

Jon Siddins (Shannons Classic GT)“While I don’t mind the wet, we’ve been very cautious because it’s been very slippery – worse than normal.

We’ll just cruise along and get home. It’s been very greasy today.

Ashley Yelds (Shannons Classic Handicap): “It’s been pretty hairy for us today.

We had an electrical problem even before we got to the first stage, so we’re hoping drier conditions later in the wee.  We’ll just go as hard as we can and bank as many seconds as we can.

It’s been going our way at the moment, but gee it’s hard work.

We can maintain our lead in the wet, but in the dry there’s some fast powerful cars that will just eat us up.”

Peter Nunn (Classic Throttle Shop GT Production): “Ben (Newman) has done a great job in the wet today. We’ve just had no grip and we’ve been battling a bit to keep it on the road.

We’ve struggled to get any temperature in our tyres to have a crack, so I need it dry.

Ben Newman (Classic Throttle Shop GT Production): “Today has suited us, as I don’t think I can run with Nunny (Peter Nunn) in the dry.

We had a bit of an advantage with the Subaru in the wet today.

I hope it stays like this, but Nunny’s a great competitor and a good driver, so wet or dry, we’ll have some fun.”

Tony Seymour (Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye): “I wasn’t expecting to be in front with the margin I’ve got, but very pleased. It was very slippery and wet today and we were just trying to get through the day and not push too hard.

I think if we continue to think like that for the rest of the event, we might just get to the end in front.

Peter Marshall (Budget TSD): “We only have a narrow points lead, but this far out, you’d think if we continue to do what we’ve been doing, the others will have to keep up with us.

The stages today were very slippery and we got taily a few times, Darryl’s done a great job driving to keep this thing on the road.”

Chris Waldock (Budget TSD): “We made a bad mistake with timing in the second-last stage, but we think we can make it back up. The wet roads haven’t bothered us at all – this car is awesome in the wet.

Jack Waldron (Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy): “We’ve just been plodding along doing the best we can, but the conditions have been treacherous. There’s no point in overdoing it in those conditions, so we’ve backed off a little and enjoyed every moment of it.

Having a one-minute lead in the wet is much better than having a one-minute lead in the dry because it’s so much harder to make up.

Matthew Gibbens (Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy): “It’s been very exciting for us today in our first day in the wet, so we started a bit cautiously and we’ve gone quicker as the day went on.

The car has handled the wet well, but we’ve still had to be careful with exit speeds out of corners and also under brakes.

We’re just getting used to what it feels like in the wet and taking it one step at a time.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

20.04.2021

White crash leaves Maguire in control

Ed Maguire holds a commanding lead in his Dodge Viper after Day 2. (Photo credit: Otherside Productions/Wishart Media) Click image for hi-res version.

Tuesday April 20, 2021

Dodge Viper driver Ed Maguire survived a difficult day which saw several cars eliminated as fickle weather hit day two of TARGA Tasmania.Local charger Maguire is looking to add to his successful rally and hillclimb record in the coveted tarmac rally where he and co-driver Zak Brakey clutch a one minute 33 second overall lead as rain lashed the day’s six stages.The pair had earlier in the day stopped at the scene of Jason and John White’s nasty accident on the Moorina stage which saw the Dodge Viper catch fire after spearing off the road and cannoning off a dirt bank.

Maguire was awarded a derived time after selflessly stopping to assist his fellow Viper competitor, ensuring his noble actions did not compromise his position at the head of the standings.

“Jason (White)’s accident today was very unfortunate, but we’ve also had a few dramas of our own today,” Maguire said.

“We had a wheel-speed sensor fail on the first transport stage, so we had no ABS for the Sideling, and in this weather and this car, it’s quite un-drive-able in those conditions.

“We got that rectified straight after and we’ve been cruising through a bit today in the wet.

“Today has been the worst tarmac conditions I’ve ever driven in and I reckon all that gravel rally experience has come into play to help.”

Maguire also leads Dutton Garage GTO standings ahead of Angus Kennard and Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R).

In a stunning display, local Trevor Macleod and Steve Glenney bagged three stage wins to be second overall and lead Dutton Garage Early Modern 4.

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 sees overnight leader Adam Kaplan and Aleshia Penney (2004 BMW M3 CSL) maintain their edge as Jon and Gina Siddins have opened up a handy two minute 46 second lead in Shannons Classic GT.

The picture in Shannons Classic Handicap sees a tight battle emerging with Ashley Yelds and Mary Hughes (1961 Volvo 122S) holding a two minute 24 second lead.

In one of the tightest battles Ben Newman and Adam Kudra (2010 Subaru WRX STi) are shading Peter Nunn and Keith Johnstone (2016 Porsche Cayman GTS) in Classic Throttle Shop GT Production by 38 seconds.

Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye leaders Tony and Sandra Seymour (2013 Lotus Exige) continue a solid run with the Queenslanders leading by two minutes and 28 seconds.

Trophy class action sees Daryl and Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Pursuit Ute) lead Budget TSD Trophy by 11 points while Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy has Matthew Gibbens and Timothy Jurds (2020 Lotus Exige) leading by one minute.

The 1981 Mitsubishi Sigma pair of Jack Waldron and Graham Mitchell lead the Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy by a healthy two-and-a-half minutes.

The day was overshadowed by the heavy shunt involving the White Viper 200m from the finish of TS 8 (Moorina).

The Viper suffered chassis and fire damage in the impact with both Jason White and his co-driver uncle John White taken to St Helens hospital for precautionary checks but were otherwise unhurt.

The accident followed on from an opening day of drama for the Whites who stalled at the start of the penultimate stage and then had a battery explode which dropped them from the lead.

“We weren’t really trying to do anything too heroic at the time,” White explained.

““As soon as we hit the stream (of water) it just snapped sideways and snapped back the other way. 

“It is one of the only things I’ve been nervous about with these cars is the really wide rear tyres which act like a couple of boogie boards under your rear wheels when you hit water.

“It was on the exit of a blind corner and there was no time to prepare for it.”

“It burst into flames pretty quick and there was a full engine bay fire.

“We managed to get our extinguishers on it and then Eddie (Maguire) and Zak (Brakey) turned up and put their extinguishers on it. Then one of the radiator hoses burst and extinguished most of the flames under the bonnet.

“The rest of the car is quite salvageable and it looks a lot worse than it is. There is a little bit of fire damage in the middle of the console where the wiring started to ignite.

“Apart from the bumper and a bonnet and a bit of wiring, It’s just a bit of chassis damage which will probably take more in time than actual monetary damage.

“We look forward to next year.”

Day three of TARGA Tasmania takes the field from Launceston across to Strahan on the West Coast, with further bad weather forecast set to add to the test ahead.

TARGA Tasmania 2021 Day 2 of 6 results (provisional)

Dutton Garage Overall
1 Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR) 
2 Trevor Macleod/Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) +1 min 33secs
3 Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) +1:46s
4 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) +1:54s
5 Peter Rullo/Dennis Sims (2020 Lotus Exige TARGA GT) +2:01s
6 Guy Lilleyman/John Lilleyman (2006 Mitsubishi Evo IX) 3:02s

Dutton Garage GT Outright
1 Ed Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR)
2 Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R) +1min:46sec
3 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R) +1:54s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4
1 Trevor Macleod/Steve Glenney (2009 Nissan GT-R) 
2 Guy Lilleyman/John Lilleyman (2006 Mitsubishi Evo IX) +1min:29sec
3 Jason Wright/Fiona Wright (2001 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +4.22s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2
1 Adam Kaplan/Aleshia Penney (2004 BMW M3 CSL)
2 Peter Roberts/Suzanne Atkins (1992 Nissan Skyline GTS-1) +1min:42sec
3 Paul Henry/Katherine Henry (2006 Porsche Cayman S) +2:14s

Shannons Classic GT
1 Jon Siddins/Gina Siddins (1970 Datsun 240Z)
2 Stuart McAuley/Philippe Etienne (1985 Porsche 911 Carrera) +2min:46sec
3 Graham Copeland/Josh Herbert (1986 Porsche 944 Turbo) +4:11s

Shannons Classic
1 Ashley Yelds/Mary Hughes (1960 Volvo 122S)
2 Patrick Mewing/Gezim Bashi (1967 Lotus Elan) +2min:24sec
3 Peter Ullrich/Sari Ullrich (1964 Studebaker Avanti) +2.34s

Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy
1 Matthew Gibbens/Timonthy Jurd (2020 Lotus Exige 410)
2 Geoffrey Olholm/John Doble (2019 Toyota Supra GTS) +1min:00s
3 Robert Bryden/Ian Noble (2020 Lotus Exige) +1:14s

Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy
1 Jack Waldren/Graham Mitchell (1981 Mitsubishi Sigma) 
2 John Stanton/John Blake (1981 Porsche 924 Turbo) +2min:31sec.
3 David Currow/Kate O’Donnell (1969 Fiat 124 AC) +27:07s

Budget TSD Trophy
1 Daryl Marshall/Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Pursuit Ute) 8 points
2 Christopher Waldock/Cristine Kirby (2016 Jaguar F-Type SVR) 19 points
3 Ben Brooksby/Robert Shepphard (2005 Mitsubishi Magna VRX) 38 points

Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye
1 Anthony Seymour/Sandra Seymour( 2018 Lotus Exige) 
2 Tyler Page/Ryan Sheehan (2007 Subaru WRX) +2min:28sec
3 Stuart Collison/Lance Arundel (2006 Subaru WRX STi Spec c) +4:26s

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

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Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

19.04.2021

Maguire snares lead after dramatic opening to TARGA Tasmania

Photo Credit: Wishart Media | Ed Maguire and Zak Bradley tearing up the tarmac

Monday April 19, 2021

Local hope Ed Maguire has speared to a shock lead after a dramatic start to the 29th edition of TARGA Tasmania.

As the field tackled the first of six stages scheduled for the day, perennial front-runners Jason and John White stamped their authority early, however the Dodge Viper pair stalled at the start of the fifth stage, Golden Valley, which saw them tumble from the lead.

Maguire and his co-driver Zak Brakey, also driving a Dodge Viper, then seized a 17 second lead.

White experienced further mechanical issues on the way to the start of the final stage of the day, to finish the run down Poatina 38 seconds behind his mate and fellow Viper driver.

While content with his day’s work, Maguire is remaining cautious, believing tyres will become a key issue across the remaining five days.

“It’s been a pretty interesting battle with the Whites today, but unfortunately for us, it’s been dry,” Maguire said.

“He’s (White) got a different tyre on the front of his Viper now and our wheels didn’t turn up in time for the event, so we’re not able to push as hard as he is in the dry, so bring on the rain.

“Other than that we’re really happy.”

Jason White was less so.

“We had some serious electrical issues and stalled it at the start line of Golden Valley and it wouldn’t start, so we had to bump start it in reverse and we were lucky to get going again’” White said.

“We had a battery explode on the way to Poatina and we’ve had acid fumes all through the cabin. Hopefully we can fix it tonight – if we can’t then we’re pretty much screwed.”

Jeff Morton and Daymon Nicoli 92019 Porsche 911 GT2 RS were eight seconds further back in third after a solid start to his campaign, with the top three overall positions mirrored in the GTO category.

Gold Coast competitors Jon and Gina Siddins carved out a handy lead in Shannons Classic GT.

Driving their 1970 Datsun 240Z, the pair managed to build an advantage through the day following a solid start. Siddins leads the popular category by one minute 13 seconds.

Moving up to second is Graham Copeland and Josh Herbert in a 1986 Porsche 944 Turbo, with the Toowoomba-based driver debuting his newly purchased machine.

The Shannons Classic handicap field has seen the well-prepared Volvo 122s of Ashley Yelds and co-driver Mary Hughes assume the top spot in the handicap-based category.

Adam Kaplan and Aleshia Penney hold a 29 second lead after completing a strong charge in their 2004 BMW M3 CSL in Dutton Garage Early Modern 2.

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4 saw Trevor MacLeod and Steve Glenney (Nissan GT-R) be given a derived time for stopping on the final stage with the pair ending the day with a one minute 4 seconds lead. Guy and John Lilleyman (2006 Mitsubishi Evo IX) are in second ahead of Liam and Larry Howarth (1995 Nissan Skyline).

In Classic Throtle Shop GT Production, Peter Nunn and Keith Johnstone (2016 Porsche Cayman GTS) have established a 53 second lead over fellow Launceston resident Ben Newman and Adam Kudra (2010 Subaru WRX STI).

A sweep of the trophy classes sees Daryl and Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Pursuit Ute) claim the lead in Budget TSD Trophy, Matthew Gibbens/Timothy Jurd (2020 Lotus Exige 410) lead Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy.

Jack Waldron and Vin Gregory (1981 Mitsubishi Sigma) head the Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy while Queenslanders Tony and Sandra Seymour (2013 Lotus Exige) lead the Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye.

The event continues tomorrow to the east of Launceston with another six stages. The first competition car is set to start TS7, the famous The Sideling stage, on the run out to St Helens and back.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

19.04.2021

EVERY GROWN MAN’S DREAM: SHANE JACOBSON ON DAY ONE OF TARGA TASMANIA

Monday April 19, 2021

TV and film star Shane Jacobson completed a successful day behind the wheel of a red Holden Monaro.

Driving with experienced co-driver Naomi Tillett, Jacobson brought home the replica of the Monaro Peter Brock drove at TARGA earlier last decade in 15th place in the Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy.

Jacobson is clearly having a blast at his first attempt at TARGA Tasmania.

“It’s fantastic as long as I do as I’m told by my navigator and I’m getting the hang of it,” Jacobson said.

“The car’s fantastic and as long as I respect it, it will stay on the road and be kind to me. 

“Being in this event is better than every boy’s dream – it’s a grown man’s dream come true for me.

“It’s already exceeded my expectations and I’m loving every single stage.

“The idea is to keep the car straight and to enjoy myself and the event is already delivering what I wanted.

“I’m travelling Tasmania, and seeing some amazing scenery – and I’m totally blown away by how well the event is run and it’s not easy to do that.

“I already want to come back again next year, or better still, I’m staying in Tassie. Somebody get me a passport.”

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

19.04.2021

WHAT THEY SAID | DAY ONE

Photo Credit: Wishart Media

Monday April 19, 2021

Our reporter caught out for a selection of competitors at the close of the day’s play on Day 1.

EDDIE MAGUIRE (Dutton Garage Overall and GTO): “It’s been a pretty interesting battle with the Whites today, but unfortunately for us, it’s been dry.

He’s got a different tyre on the front of his now and our wheels didn’t turn up in time for the event, so we’re not able to push as hard as he is in the dry, so bring on the rain.

Other than that we’re really happy, but we just have to look after our tyres a bit more in the dry.”

JASON WHITE (Dutton Garage Overall and GTO): “We had some serious electrical issues and stalled it at the start line (Golden Valley) and it wouldn’t start, so we had to bump start it in reverse and we were lucky to get going again. We had a battery explode on the way to Poatina and we’ve had acid fumes all through the cabin.Hopefully we can fix it tonight – if we can’t then we’re pretty much screwed.”

JON SIDDINS (Shannons Classic GT): “This is my 19th Targa Tasmania and it’s been great to be back. We’ve given the engine a bit of a freshen up for this event. I’ve had a few engine problems in our last event, but hopefully we’ve overcome that.”

ASHLEY YELDS (Shannons Classic Handicap):  “We’ve been driving the car as hard as it will go. We’ve changed to a different tyre this year and we’re learning just what we can do with them, so it’s been a bit tricky and a bit of a learning curve for us.It’s going to be tough, as this category is tight. We’ve very happy to be where we are now, but it’s going to be hard to stay there over the next few days.”

PETER NUNN (Classic Throttle Shop GT Production): “We’ve had a good day with no dramas and just easing into it. The car’s better than it’s ever been.The new stages have been great.Golden Valley was so fast and flowing that I’d like to go back and have another go because I reckon we could gain a fair bit of time.

ADAM KAPLAN (Dutton Garage Early Modern 2): “It’s been really good today.

There were a few sprinkles of rain, but it didn’t worry us at all.The car’s going really well and we haven’t changed a thing from last time, apart from new stickers on the back.”

TREVOR MacLEOD (Dutton Garage Early Modern 4): “It’s great to have someone like Steve (Glenney) alongside – it gets you up to speed fairly quickly.

We’ve done a couple of other events together, but this is our first TARGA Tasmania as a team.

It’s great to be back at TARGA Tasmania after no event last year. Being dry has helped ensure the first day isn’t too stressful.”

SHANE JACOBSON (Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy):  “It’s fantastic as long as I do as I’m told by my navigator and I’m getting the hang of it. The car’s fantastic and as long as I respect it, it will stay on the road and be kind to me. Being in this event is better than every boy’s dream – it’s a grown man’s dream come true for me.

It’s already exceeded my expectations and I’m loving every single stage.

The idea is to keep the car straight and to enjoy myself and the event is already delivering what I wanted.

I’m travelling Tasmania, and seeing some amazing scenery – and I’m totally blown away by how well the event is run and it’s not easy to do that.

I already want to come back again next year, or better still, I’m staying in Tassie. Somebody get me a passport.”

DARRYL MARSHALL (Budget TSD trophy): “We loved the new stages – awesome pieces of tarmac.

We’ve done this event a few times now and we set ourselves a challenge to day to settle in from the start.

We’ve had pretty ordinary first days before, so we’ve had a crack today and it’s been really good.

JACK WALDRON (Shannons Thoroughbred Trophy): “Today’s stages have been absolutely magic.

It’s the best first ever first day I’ve had.

Back in 2019 I split the diff carrier on the West Coast, so I’m looking for a better result this year. So far, so good.”

MATTHEW GIBBENS (Spirit of Tasmania GT Sports Trophy): “This is our first rally in this car and also our first rally in GT Sports Trophy, so we’re having a lot of fun.

This category is perfect for our Lotus and Lotus Simply Sports Cars does a great job with a support crew and it takes all the stress out of it.”

TONY SEYMOUR (Spirit of Tasmania Rookie Rallye): “This is our first event, so we’re just easing our way into it. We’ve had absolutely no dramas and that’s the way we like it. The day has probably exceeded our expectations, so we’re fairly happy.”

JOHN BAIN (Ferrari Tour): “Today has been awesome so far.

This is our first time and we’re loving it. Ferrari organised it for us and it’s all been pretty seamless. It seemed like a good idea and my co-driver said “yep we’re in” so here we are.

PHILLIP CHONG (Lotus Tour): “It’s been a fantastic day. I wouldn’t be here without the Lotus boys. They made it possible for me to come.

I wasn’t going to come here by myself, but having the support of Lotus is like having my own pit crew, so knowing that support was there gave me the confidence to have a go.

STEVE WINNING (Tour): “I’m here to push myself and push my machine. I’ve always been into Maseratis and it’s a classic brand, so I thought that was for me.

We’ve done Targa High Country before, but this is our first Targa Tasmania and we’re loving it so far.”

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

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Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

17.04.2021

New tyre and brake package to boost White Viper

Photo Credit: Angryman Photography

Saturday April 17th, 2021

Perennial TARGA Tasmania charger Jason White says the move to a smaller tyre and rim will assist his chances of equalling a record at the iconic tarmac rally.

Jason and John White have now combined to seven Targa Tasmania titles, one behind the record set by Jim Richards and Barry Oliver.

The Dodge Viper will switch from wear sensitive and extremely low profile 19-inch tyres on the front to a more durable 18-inch rim and tyre combination.

“We have a different tyre package on the front which will hopefully stop us whingeing about our tyre wear,” White says.

“The only option we had before was the OEM tyre that came on the car. 

“So now it has eased our mind as far as the front of the car goes but the rear is still as big an issue as it has ever been.

“There is a massive tyre on the rear so there is no-one that makes a tyre that would be compatible for it.”

Together with the front tyre change, the Viper will see the carbon/ceramic brake package binned. Instead White has opted for a more conventional steel brake set-up all-round.

“Hopefully it will give us more consistency in the feel of the brake pedal,” White says.

“We are happy with it at this stage but it is still unproven.

“It won’t be until we push hard down the side of Cethana(37.71km) on Day 3 whether the decision has been correct or not.

“There is no racetrack on the planet that is as hard going down the mountain as Cethana.

“If you still have brakes at the bottom then you know you’ve pretty much got it right.”

White tried the new arrangement for the first time at the HellyerGorge rally earlier this year but has not competed in a TARGA event since High Country in 2019.

The changes come as White and his co-driver uncle John White eye the record of eight wins by Jim Richards and Barry Oliver.

“That (eight wins) is the starting point for us. John has always said that he would retire at 10 (wins),” White declared.

“We’ve had a couple of failed attempts in the last five or six years.

“We’ve been in the lead of more TARGAS that we’ve won and have lost them for one reason or another.

“An eighth win is something we are really, really desperate to get on the board. The eighth win would just be a stepping stone to 10. 

“But you can be too confident about a TARGA attempt. We are well aware of the battles ahead to actually get to the finish line and win it. Turning up with the fastest car is a very secondary thing.

“This year is very important to us and it certainly has got our attention and we are not heading into it lightly.”

GT Outright will also see Dodge Viper machinery for Eddie Maguire and Zak Brakey and John Ireland and Janet Binns.

Former TARGA Tasmania winner and 2020 TARGA Great Barrier Reef champion Tony Quinn and Kate Catford are in fine form and return as top chances in their 2018 Nissan GT-R.

The 29th edition of TARGA Tasmania will kick off from the Launceston Silverdome to the first stage, High Plains, on April 19 with the event finishing after 37 stages and 618km of competitive distance at PW1 in Hobart on April 24.

Targa Tasmania honour roll – outright winners

1992 Greg Crick/Greg Preece, Honda NSX

1993 Greg Crick/Greg Preece, Honda NSX

1994 Andrew Miedecke/Alan Taylor, Porsche 944 Turbo Cup

1995 Neal Bates/Coral Taylor, Toyota Celica GT-Four (ST205)

1996 Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, Porsche 911 Turbo (993)

1997 Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, Porsche 911 Turbo (993) 

1998 Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, Porsche 911 Turbo (993)

1999 Peter Fitzgerald/Michael Mansour, Porsche 911 Turbo (993) 

2000 Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, Porsche 911 GT3 CS

2001 Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, Porsche 911 Turbo (996)

2002 Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, Porsche 911 Turbo (996)

2003 Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, Porsche 911 GT3 CS

2004 Tony Sullens/Julia Rabbett, Subaru Impreza WRX STiS202

2005 Jason White/John White, Nissan Skyline GT-R V-Spec N1 (R34)

2006 Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, Porsche 911 GT2 CS (996)

2007 Tony Sullens/Julia Barkley, Subaru Impreza WRX Type RA (GC8)

2008 Steve Glenney/Bernie Webb, Mitsubishi Lancer Evolution IX RS

2009 Tony Quinn/Naomi Tillett, Nissan GT-R

2010 Jason White/John White Lamborghini, Gallardo ReiterSuper Trofeo Stradale

2011 Tony Quinn/Naomi Tillett, Nissan GT-R

2012 Jason White/John White, Lamborghini Gallardo Super Trofeo Stradale

2013 Jason White/John White, Lamborghini Gallardo Super Trofeo Stradale

2014 Jamie Vandenberg/Dennis Sims, Nissan GT-R

2015 Jason White/John White, Lamborghini Gallardo SquadraCorse

2016 Matt Close/Cameron Reeves, 2015 Porsche 911 GT3

2017 Jason White/John White, Dodge Viper

2018 Jason White/John White, Dodge Viper

2019 Paul Stokell/Kate Catford, Lotus Exige Sport 350

2020 Not held

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Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

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16.04.2021

Siddins primed for Classic GT showdown at TARGA Tasmania

Friday, 16th April, 2021

Entertaining Classic GT competitor Jon Siddins believes tyres will play a crucial role in the outcome of the 29th edition of TARGA Tasmania which gets underway this Monday and finishes on April 24.

Siddins has an enviable record in the popular Classic GT class alongside co-driver Gina Siddins with the pair capturing two wins and a second from their last four TT campaigns in the 1970 Datsun 240Z.

“We normally go quite well in Tassie. With all these new rule changes it will make things different,” Siddins said.

With 37 stages across almost 620 kilometres, TARGA Tasmania will dish up a considerable challenge to competitors and their machines.

“The last time we ran around 600 kilometres we were allowed eight tyres but you are now allowed just six tyres,” Siddins said.

“Hopefully that should help me a bit. I can manage my tyres a bit better than the other guys because I haven’t got the power some of the other cars have to wear them out.

“The Dunlop tyres we run have been really good, especially when its wet. I tend make a mile on everyone if there is a bit of moisture around.”

Siddins had to source a new bottom-end for the Datsun’s engine after he split the bore, forcing him out of the 2020 TARGA Great Barrier Reef just as he was mounting a strong challenge for victory.

“Went down to Tassie just after Christmas to pick up an engine and we only just got back before the borders shut again so we were lucky with the timing.

“Everything seems to have come together and we’ll just give the car a polish and that’s about it.”

In GT Sports Trophy, Robert Bryden and co-driver Ian Noble are looking to go one place better following their stunning class debut in February.

The pair are a classic example of how to navigate a pathway through the ranks in TARGA after experiencing their first event as part of the Lotus tour group in 2016.

At their first attempt at GT Sports Trophy at Mt Buller earlier this year, Bryden and Noble finished second, falling short of the top place by just 25 seconds.

A long time Lotus owner whose models have included a 1983 Esprit Turbo, Elan, Elan+2, Lotus 7 Series 4, Elise and Exige S1, Bryden’s GTST charge is now an Exige 410 Sport.

Bryden professes to be a self-confessed car fan and driving enthusiast while admitting he is not a professional racing driver.

“I think I am like a lot of other drivers, you think some of these driving events are too hard to attempt or you have to be a professional,” Bryden explains.

“But once we had a taste of what TARGA was about, we felt comfortable enough to try a more competitive class.

“High Country was our first time in GT Sports Trophy and we scored a podium and 16th outright which even included a top 10 around the tight Mansfield stage,” Bryden said.

Bryden and Noble are one of 17 entries in GTST which has attracted six Lotus machines and a decent spread of models from Porsche, BMW, Nissan, Subaru, Mitsubishi and Toyota.

Prior to graduating to GTST, Bryden used his Lotus Exige 380 Cup in the points-based TSD (time, speed, distance) Trophy.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

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Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

16.04.2021

Stars to tour TARGA Tasmania

Thursday, 15th April, 2021

A selection of celebrities are coming out to play at TARGA Tasmania which sets off from Launceston’s Silverdome on April 19.

The stars, who represent a broad range of backgrounds, add even more spice to a jam-packed entry list for the 29th running of the world’s most prestigious tarmac rally.

Among the group are former Tasmania-born AFL player Thomas Bellchambers who played 136 games for Essendon.

Former ruckman Bellchambers will be joined for the TARGA sojourn by his fiancee actress Olympia Valance as co-driver. Valance has starred in the Australian soap Neighbours and the Australian Rules-based TV series Playing for Keeps.

“Growing up in Launceston it was a tradition to go and watch the TARGA cars tear down the Tamar Highway,” Bellchambers said.

“I’m stoked to be able to experience that from the driver’s seat in what will be a fun week experiencing this great rally.”

Georgia Love

Best known for her time on the reality TV show, The Bachelorette, Georgia Love will also be part of the celebrity line-up as well as Sarah Czarnuch, a newspaper columnist, influencer and model.

Sarah Czarnuch

“After reporting on TARGA for years as a journalist in Tasmania, I’m absolutely thrilled to be heading to the beautiful Apple Isle to get to experience the TARGA Tour and get an awesome driving experience for myself,” Love said.

Perth-based firefighter Cameron Cranley, a contestant on the same season of The Bachelorette as Georgie Love, will also enjoy time on the TARGA Tour.

Cameron Cranley

Another high profile inclusion is Tasmanian raised Nic Davidson, a former professional athlete and entrepreneur who founded multiple businesses including Macha Maiden, offering a range of green tea-based powders, and Matcha Mylkbar, a vegan cafe located at St Kilda.

The celebrities will all drive identical Mercedes-Benz C300 machines as part of the non-competitive tour side of TARGA through the first four days of the six-day rally.

TARGA embraces a myriad of competitive classes that will do battles across 37 timed stages over almost 620km across the length and breadth of Tasmania.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

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Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

15.04.2021

Shane Jacobson to drive ‘Brock’s Monaro’ at TARGA Tasmania

A replica of Peter Brock’s Red Monaro

Thursday, 15th April, 2021

Organisers of TARGA Tasmania have pulled off a major coup with confirmation that film and television star Shane Jacobson will compete behind the wheel of an exact replica of Peter Brock’s Holden Monaro.

Jacboson, a long-time motorsport fan who has competed in several rallies on mainland Australia in the past, will realise one of his lasting motoring ambitions by having his first taste of the iconic Tasmanian tarmac odyssey.

The acclaimed actor, writer and funnyman will have the services of the brilliantly credentialled Naomi Tillett who will call the pace notes for the 37-stage, 620 kilometre rally. Tillett won TARGA Tasmania as co-driver for Tony Quinn in 2009 and 2011.

A TARGA-spec 5.7litre V8 Monaro was driven by Brock at the Tasmanian event from 2002-2004.

“It’s a whole bunch of dreams come true to be honest,” Melbourne-based Jacobson said.

“I’ve always wanted to do TARGA Tassie and have been asked but have never been available, but this year the stars aligned and got all my ducks in a row and my wife (Felicity) said yes.

“As a motoring enthusiast and a revhead, and I’m an even share of both, it’s a dream come true.

“Then to be asked to drive the (exact replica) car that Brockie drove, the great part is there is one stage that I’ll be able to beat him on because he ran out of fuel on one stage.

“I’ve actually got a chance for one time in my life to actually beat Brockie.”

Jacobson is excited about the prospects of teaming up with South Australian Tillett whose knowledge and expertise of TARGA will be a considerable asset.

“She is very experienced and at least there is one person in the car who will know what they are doing,” Jacobson quipped.

“But seriously our job is to go out there have a good time and bring the car back home straight and okay do some okay times.

“We want to get a really good flow-on and enjoy the Tasmanian roads at decent speeds.”

Jacobson is understandably pumped at the chance to drive the red Monaro CV8 and is relishing the chance to compete on Tasmania’s technically challenging and scenic roads.

“I’m taking one helmet to protect my head and another helmet to cover up my smile,” he chuckled.

“You can’t get better than the idea of 2000 kilometres of roads of which 620 of that is competitive and all of it with the backdrop of Tasmania’s stunning landscape and terrain. 

“It’s a tick, tick, tick.”

The 29th edition of TARGA Tasmania sees the field leave from the Silverdome in Launceston on a 66km touring stage to the first competitive test, High Plains (5.80km) on April 19. It is the first of 37 timed sages across six days and 2437km of total distance.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

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Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

13.04.2021

Anear hints at more pace from Mercedes GT R

Luke Anear at TARGA High Country (Photo Credit: Otherside Productions/Wishart Media)

Sunday April 11, 2021

Experienced competitor Luke Anear labels TARGA Tasmania as the best event he has ever done in a car.

Heading into the showpiece event from April 19 to 24 on the island state, Anear admits he has not scratched the surface in terms of understanding the electronic intricacies of the Mercedes GT R turbo-charged V8.

After debuting the super coupe at TARGA’s only event in 2020 (the Cairns-based Great Barrier Reef) and showing improvement at the February running of TARGA High Country, Anear says there is a lot more performance left in the GT R.

“We are still learning about the car but we are heading in the right direction,” Anear explained.

“There is a lot more left in the car so I just need to convince myself to brake a lot later.

“We cut a tyre going down Buller in February which wasn’t great but all-in-all we were happy with the result.”

Anear and co-driver Andy Sarandis guided the Mercedes GT R to third in the GT Outright class at Mt Buller behind the Nissan GT-R of Tony Quinn and Kate Catford.

Placing sixth in overall standings at the alpine event, Anear says he is excited about the GT R tackling its maiden TARGA Tasmania.

“We are getting better and better each time we go out in the car,” Anear said.

“But there is so much to learn in terms of all the electronic systems in the car.

“I’m really excited about getting to TARGA. It’s the longest one there has been and it’s going to be a real test as ever.

“Apart from the competition side of things, TARGA is a real mental test of endurance as well as the physical side of things.”

Along with the Quinn/Catford Nissan, the GTO field of 19 entries is headed by seven-time champion Jason White and John White in their Dodge Viper.

The strong field is spiced with a mix of talent including Jeff Morton/Daymon Nicoli (2019 Porsche GT2 RS), Eddie Maguire/Zak Brakey (2016 Dodge Viper ACR), John Ireland/Janet Binns (2017 Dodge Viper ACR) and Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler (2015 Nissan GT-R).

Making the transition to GTO from their highly successful years in Classic GT, is Michael and Daniel Bray who will campaign a 2014 Nissan GT-R.

Anear is relishing the chance to mix it with the hot competition as much as he is looking forward to the camaraderie away from the stages.

“There are a lot of challenges about the event and we have picked up a few things over the years. 

“The roads are truly amazing and I can’t think of any tarmac event in the world that tops it really.

“Tommy Monaghan (runs in GTP with co-driver Alan Stephenson) is a good mate of mine and we both mix TARGA with our gravel rally program.

“The camaraderie is what makes TARGA so special as well as the actual quality of the competition on roads that are breath-taking.

“TARGA Tas is the best event I’ve done in a car by a mile. It is about finishing as much as it is about competing.”

The 29th edition of TARGA Tasmania will kick off from the Launceston Silverdome to the first stage, High Plains, on April 19 with the event finishing after 37 stages and 618km of competitive distance at PW1 in Hobart on April 24.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

13.04.2021

Top Early Modern 2 contenders primed for TARGA

Adam Spence (Photo Credit: Otherside Productions/Wishart Media)

Saturday April 10, 2021

Sydney-based competitor Adam Spence and co-driver Lee Challoner-Miles have touched off the perfect preparation ahead of the 29th edition of TARGA Tasmania.

The world’s most celebrated tarmac rally is set to kick off from Launceston on April 19 with the event finishing in Hobart after six gruelling days of competition on April 24.

Spence and Challoner-Miles recently completed a thorough reconnaissance of the course that this year sees the longest cumulative competitive stages in the event’s storied history.

The pair are considered strong contenders in the Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 category following their class-winning result at High Country in Victoria in February when they debuted their newly acquired 2004 BMW M3 CSL.

The lightweight version of BMW’s super coupe will face its strongest challenge in Tasmania across the 37 stages that cover almost 620km of the state’s diverse network of roads.

“We recently did the recce, taking in the whole course in just under three days. It almost killed me,” Spence said.

“The thing that we really noticed is that there are a lot of mixed surfaces and surfaced impacts and there are a lot of resurfaced areas on certain stages.

“Primarily we have learnt that there is a lot of time to be gained if you can understand the grip levels. So we spent a lot of time on that in the notes.”

Spence said that apart from some minor tweaks, the E46 model M3 that exudes sports-car balance and cracking performance, remains relatively untouched following its High Country romp.

The M3 managed to win EM2 by almost six minutes and was classified in a highly commendable 10th outright following the rescheduled Mt Buller High Country event.

“It was really satisfying because we went a lot better than expected,” Spence said.

“We have done a few little suspension tweaks that we weren’t able to do prior to High Country. But that is all we have had to do to be honest.”

Spence announced that one of his sponsorship spots for the TARGA Tasmania campaign has been given up to the Sydney-based charity Can4Cancer which also has support from the two-car Team Sydney Supercars team (drivers Fabian Coulthard and Garry Jacobson).

“We have given up one of our sponsorship spots on the bonnet to Can4Cancer and part of the deal will see Lee and I do a 350 kilometre bike ride for the charity a few weeks after TARGA,” Spence said.

The EM2 field also sees another 2004 BMW M3 CSL in the hands of experienced TARGA Tasmania runner Adam Kaplan and co-driver Aleshia Penney as the Munich manufacturer is represented by five entries in the 14-strong EM2 field.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

13.04.2021

Colourful Copeland chipper about new TARGA ride

Graham Copeland (Photo Credit: Angryman Photography)

Friday April 9, 2021

Graham Copeland will feel like he is driving in the lap of luxury when he returns to compete in a new class at TARGA Tasmania from April 19 to 24.

Retiring his much loved but problematic open-wheel 1941 GMC Jimmy Special, Copeland moves from Classic Handicap to Classic GT in a 1986 Porsche 944 Turbo he will share with regular co-driver Josh Herbert.

“That’s going to be novel,” Copeland said referring to competing in a car with a roof. “And an actual windscreen too so we don’t get bugs in our teeth.

“It’s got a heater, power windows and compared to that old bucket we’ve been bashing around, it drives beautifully.”

Copeland says the priority is to ‘plod along’ and get to the finish of the six-day, 37-stage TARGA Tasmania which has grown to cover a record competitive distance of almost 620km.

“We bought the Porsche about 18 months ago, but then last year was canned because of COVID. So we have spent the last year building it and getting it ready.

“Hopefully it survives and lasts six days. But we are intending to finish, that is our aspiration.

“It drives beautifully, handles nicely and has got enough mumbo.

“It’s quite a good little piece of gear. It’s a left-hooker so I think Josh will find it interesting calling the notes from the right-hand side.”

Copeland is looking forward to having some semblance of luxury and reliability with the Porsche coupe he bought off the brother of Supercars ace Cam Waters in Mildura.

“It was set-up specifically as a track car so we have had to do a heck of a lot to bring it up to a TARGA-spec car.”

After having his work cut out to keep the temperamental Jimmy Special on the road and even coax to the finish line, Copeland is looking forward to a cosier time with the Porsche.

“We’ve gone from carrying a thousand spares and tools to carrying a new phone and a lighter so if we break down I’ll just phone a friend,” he joked.

“That was a fast car the old Jimmy, but I was just knackered every day because it took so much work just to keep it on the road. Leaf springs and wheels going in every direction.

“But we haven’t got rid of the Jimmy Special. It is a family heirloom so it’s sitting out the back in the shed. I don’t think anyone is mad enough to drive it aside from me.”

Copeland is also pretty chuffed about acquiring a new competition number.

“I was pretty impressed with our new number, 666. It suits us perfectly.”

The 2021 edition of TARGA Tasmania sets off from Launceston on April 19 with the first of 37 stages amounting to almost 620km of competitive distance and 2437m of total distance over six days.

The “new” Copeland Porsche for 2021.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530 902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

Social media contact details
Jenna Carmichael – 0487 828 620

07.04.2021

WHAT MAKES TARGA ROADS MAGICAL

Tony Quinn at TARGA High Country. Photo credit: Otherside Productions/Wishart Media

Some of Australia’s most successful tarmac rally drivers have analysed the reasons why TARGA Tasmania’s roads are the envy of world motorsport.

High on their list is the sheer variety of roads that criss-cross the island state.

The network of public roads embrace twisting, undulating routes with straighter expanses of bitumen that cut through some of the most unique and spectacular terrain in Australia.

Since the first TARGA Tasmania in 1992, the event has evolved into the most pre-eminent tarmac rally competition in the world that will celebrate its 30th anniversary next year.

Ahead of the 29th edition of TT blasting off from April 19 to 24, a selection of drivers have outlined the reasons why Tasmania offers the best experience of a lifestyle motoring odyssey.

Jim Richards, who with co-driver Barry Oliver have claimed a record eight outright TARGA Tasmania wins, says the highlight of driving on Tassie roads is the tantalising variety of roads that access exhilarating terrain.

“The roads in Tassie are a real combination of up and down and around and nice flowing corners with some nice gorge style corners,” said Richards, who retired from the competitive element of TARGA Tasmania after his 26th time at the event in 2018.

“It has a bit of everything. Its got a bit of wet and dry but the main thing is you get a chance to relax in between the stages. 

“It’s also great to have a bit of camaraderie with your co-driver and other competitors. 

“Barry (Oliver) and I just really enjoy it. Now that we are just doing the Tour (non-competitive) side of things its not quite as serious and its just a nice relaxing drive in the country.

“You are just going a little bit faster than you normally can. But you get a chance to look around and take in the surroundings a lot more.

“The scenery is different in Tassie than anywhere else in the country so it really is quite unique.”

Accomplished circuit racer and the 2019 TARGA Tasmania winner, Paul Stokell is well qualified to judge what makes the DNA of the event so special.

“I think its probably the best event I’ve done anywhere in the world simply because of the diverse nature of the roads. You are out there on the road where you are allowed to drive unrestricted so its a pretty magical experience,” said Stokell, who was born in Tasmania.

“It’s one of the highlights of my driving career and the beauty about Tasmania is you are never going over the same roads twice.

“I guess I grew up on a lot of the west coast roads and they just flow so well. I don’t know of any better roads in the world. 

“The highways keep going through the mountain passes, the surfaces of the roads are pretty good and I don’t think you could match it anywhere in the world. It’s pretty unique.

“You look at events around the world, everything has been sterilised so much over the years particularly in circuit racing, so TARGA and the Isle of Man races I consider as the last bastion of freedom that drivers and riders have a chance to really test their mettle against the elements.”

Melbourne Porsche driver Matt Close maintains that the pure variety of terrain and roads are the reason why TARGA Tasmania is regarded as the leading tarmac rally in the world.

“It’s the variety, so for example, like the difference between the Phillip Island and Baskerville race circuits and you’ve got everything in between,” Close explained.

“You’ve got the fast, flowing stuff and the tight, technical stuff.

“But what I really like about it is that it builds. The super quick stuff down the west coast and just when you feel like you are getting a little bit weary from three days of racing, it amps up again so it sort of crescendos to the point where the stakes get higher and the weather gets a bit worse.

“Picking two stages for comparison, you couldn’t get any different than The Sideling and Mt Arrowsmith. So there is a bit in it for everyone.”

The 2021 edition of TARGA Tasmania sets off from Launceston on April 19 with the first of 37 stages amounting to almost 620km of competitive distance and 2437m of total distance over six days.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

31.03.2021

DYNAMIC DUO SOAR FROM TARGA TOUR TO GT SPORTS TROPHY PODIUM

Many driving enthusiasts have fierce aspirations of competing in a tarmac rally event. After participating in six TARGA events over the years, Robert Bryden and navigator Ian Noble have driven their Lotus Exige Sport 410 to victory, having secured a maiden podium place in the competitive GT Sports Trophy class at TARGA High Country, in Victoria.

Robert has been a passionate driving enthusiast from the young age of six, having an older brother who introduced him to fast cars and driving early on. He isn’t a professional, but a self confessed car lover, aiming to enjoy his time behind the wheel and gain some skills along the way. While many driving enthusiasts will initially consider advanced training or track day events as a way to fuel their passions, not too many will realise how accessible a TARGA tarmac rally truly is. In fact, practically anyone can try their first rally event with a road registered vehicle and a Motorsport Australia license.

“I think I am like a lot of other drivers, you think some of these driving events are too hard to attempt or you have to be a professional. With a bit of research & the help of my Sydney Lotus dealership I could do it knowing they were there to help me along the way.”

In 2016, Rob decided try his luck at his first TARGA event; he joined the Australian Lotus Tour group at TARGA High Country. TARGA Australia runs a number of Tour groups as part of their tarmac rally event program. These groups travel on the same closed roads as the competition classes, but is not timed and gives any first timer a spirited taste of what doing a tarmac rally is all about, without the stress or pressure of competing. Lotus hosts an exclusive group that is available for owners of Lotus elite sports cars. Prior to learning about this opportunity, Rob was a little daunted by the thought of entering, but the organised, no-fuss Tour group led by Lotus made it simple.

In 2018, Robert and Ian decided to compete in the TSD Competition at TARGA Tasmania, TARGA High Country and TARGA Great Barrier Reef with great success. Multiple top five positions at each of these events pushed the duo to take on the GT Sports Trophy class at TARGA High Country 2021, so Robert upgraded to a Lotus Exige Sport 410. 

“Once we had a taste of what Targa was about, we felt comfortable enough to try a more competitive class. Driving on closed roads in a tarmac rally is a unique experience. It’s not just about the driving, but doing an event with other driving enthusiasts is like nothing else.”

With the assistance of Simply Sports Cars Lotus in Sydney, their car was prepared with all the necessary safety equipment which included safety harnesses, driver and navigator communications as well as a safety roll cage. They were ready to take on the mountain.

The opening day of TARGA High Country enveloped crews in rain and mist. Even with border restrictions hampering event entries, there were over 60 cars rearing to go. By the end of the first leg, Robert and Ian were leading their category with a six second gap to second place.

“Day one…was a huge challenge. We had no idea how we would go and had no expectations at all. The car was superbly set up by Simply Sports Cars and we just drove smoothly, linking turns and not throwing the car about. To our great surprise [ and I’m sure to the surprise of others ] we ended up leading the field in our class against some very experienced competitors. Our time was even ahead of some of the Open class competitors!”

Day two rolled in with clear skies and some longer stages. By the afternoon, Robert and Ian had moved to second place behind Trude and Morrison with another sub ten-second gap separating the teams. 

“I think in the drier conditions, we had less of an advantage with our smooth and gentler driving style than we did in the wet, although we did win one stage and were not far behind on the others – a second here and there. It was huge fun competing against former targa winning teams in our class and then having social dinners at night and ‘talking it up’ with lots of laughs together’’

The battle of the last stages during day three saw Rob and Ian finally pass Sher and Murphy to clinch their first ever podium position in GT Sports Trophy. After three days of gruelling competition, it was less than 30 seconds that separated the top three positions; all Lotus Exiges.

“The final day, we knew we had to push it to hold onto a podium position and that we had a real chance of overtaking the car ahead. We went into it with a positive mindset while realising TARGA is all about finishing – to balance pushing on hard, communicating between driver and navigator while not overdoing it. If you make an error on a [regular] track, there’s a strong chance nothing untoward will happen. An error at TARGA is less forgiving so judgement and caution play a significant part in success. We went really hard on the Jamieson stage, and caught time on the leader and actually caught and passed the car in third spot behind us. The fourth placed car went too hard and went off. This gave us a real chance on the last stage; the fabulous run through Mansfield township, where the locals were set up in their yards watching and cheering as the cars flew past. We nailed the town stage and got the second fastest time ever by a Lotus and a time that gave us tenth outright despite our 130kph maximum speed allowance. What a way to finish the event, ending up only 25 seconds behind our good friends Simon and Deon after three days competing.”

Mansfield Shire GT Sports Trophy 2021 Results

1st Place – Simon Trude/Dion Morrison (2019 Lotus Exige 410 Sport)

2nd Place – Robert Bryden/Ian Noble (2020 Lotus Exige) +25s

3rd Place – Steven Sher/Fergal Murphy (2016 Lotus Exige) +2:07s

This is the story of how a true car lover worked his way through the TARGA ranks, slowly gaining experience through the Tours, and eventually finishing second place in one of the more prestigious competition categories. Rob is an excellent example of how anyone can achieve their motorsport dreams with a little bit of patient perseverance. Congratulations Rob and Ian!

You can watch the full interview here.

HOW CAN YOU ENTER A TARGA AUSTRALIA RALLY EVENT?

Lotus Cars Australia make it really easy for any owner of an Elise, Exige or Evora sports car to participate in a TARGA Australia tarmac rally event by hosting an official Lotus Tour Group. This is the first step for anyone wanting to see what a rally event is like. Head to www.lotuscars.com.au to find out more.

Simply Sports Cars Lotus in Sydney provides support for driving crews who are interested in getting into the competitive classes like TSD, GT Sports Trophy or the open GT classes with either ground up vehicle builds, modifications to existing vehicles or their TARGA GT spec rally car package. Head to www.simplysportscars.com to find out more.

Special thanks to Paul D’Ambra for this article. 

23.03.2021

HIGH COUNTRY EPISODE OF TARGA TV READY TO WATCH ON 9NOW

TO WATCH NOW, CLICK HERE

TARGA TV is back everyone.

9Now premiered our new episode of TARGA TV last Sunday, focusing on our latest event which was held on Mount Buller in February 2021. Created by OtherSide Productions, this 22 minute episode is packed with all the best action and highlights of our exceptional tarmac rally.

Give it a watch now HERE for free on 9Now!

Whilst TARGA High Country saw a postponement of the event for the first time ever, better late than never we say as we are just so grateful to have been able to run the event during these unprecedented times. Unfortunately due to volatility and closures of state borders, there were teams that were not able to join us. Check out what you missed and what there is to look forward to when we hold the event again in November!

09.03.2021

TARGA Tasmania fires 30th anniversary launch button

The official start of the first TARGA Tasmania in 1992
The milestone 30th edition of TARGA Tasmania for 2022 was officially launched today, marking the one-year-to-go countdown to the major anniversary event of the iconic motorsport series.

Entries are now open for the 30th anniversary running of TARGA Tasmania, which will be staged at a brand new time slot from March 8 to 13 next year, immediately following the Eight Hour day/Labour Day long weekend.

It is the first time that TARGA Tasmania will have been held during March, and will further build on the appeal of the event moving out of the traditionally cooler months of April and May.

Moving from a Tuesday to Sunday format from the normal Monday to Saturday schedule, the landmark event will expand to a record competitive distance of over 700 kilometres with a total of 2200 kilometres travelled around the island state.

It is expected that more than 400 entries across TARGA’s range of classes will see TARGA Tasmania 30 feature the largest motorsport competition field in the world.

Paying homage to the TARGA Tasmania event in 1992, the event will begin from the same location as the maiden rally in the heart of Launceston, outside the Grand Chancellor Hotel, then known as the Launceston International Hotel.

A cavalcade of motoring history will cross the start line on March 8, 2022, as the event continues to attract some of the finest motor vehicles ever made, both in the competitive rally section and the ever growing Tour, which attracts motor enthusiasts and their magnificent modern cars from leading prestige brands.

TARGA Tasmania has survived the peaks and troughs over time to become a key money-spinner for the state with a direct economic return of over $15 million that equates to over $310 million since 1992.

The impact of one of Australia’s most enduring motorsport events translates to more than 50,000 bed nights during event week.

Marking TARGA Tasmania 30 will be a return of a number of key routes that includes some iconic street stages.

TARGA chief executive Mark Perry confidently predicts the 30th anniversary event will continue the growth spurt of the internationally acclaimed rally.

“At that offical start back in 1992, no one would have been thinking about TARGA Tasmania still being around 30 years later in the 21st Century,” Perry said. “It promises something very special for all those involved and the people of Tasmania.

“The 10th and 20th anniversary events both broke all records with more than 300 cars competing, making TARGA Tasmania the largest tarmac rally in the world.

“It has been a tumultuous ten years since the 20th anniversary event culminating in the first ever cancellation last year right at the beginning of the COVID-19 outbreak. 

“Time has shown it was the right call to make and the launching of our 30th event today gives everyone great hope of an exciting future ahead, for not only TARGA, but the many thousands of events trying to survive through these difficult times.

“It is very important to our communities and our culture to have events happening and whilst we all took them for granted before the pandemic, the amount of interest in TARGA Tasmania right now is unprecedented and hence we are opening entries to our keystone event today. 

“It promises to be hugely successful for all the communities we visit, with many returning competitors from the early years and whilst it is too early to say if our international guests can join us in 2022, we remain hopeful that given the profile of TARGA overseas that they can come and join in on the celebrations.”  

Ahead of TARGA Tasmania 30, the 29th edition of the event next month is secure. It has attracted a bumper field of entries as Tasmania gears up for the world’s most acclaimed tarmac rally from April 19-24.

*Click logo for hi-res version

See launch video here: https://youtu.be/FiL1tEPzL6k Broadcast quality footage available.

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995
16.02.2021

Quinn establishes commanding TARGA Championship points lead

Outstanding tarmac rally driver Tony Quinn holds a decisive lead in the coveted Modern Outright category of the 2021 Motorsport Australia TARGA Championship.

Following COVID-19 disruptions, the national TARGA title embraces the already run TARGA Great Barrier Reef (staged in September 2020), the recently completed TARGA High Country and the blue riband TARGA Tasmania scheduled from April 19 to 24.

Quinn brilliantly won the opening round in Queensland in his Nissan GT-R and followed that success with second outright at the rescheduled High Country event earlier this month, clawing his way back from fourth on the final day. He has been crewed each time by co-drivers Brian Foster and Kate Catford respectively.

From a maximum of 140 points, Quinn has accumulated 133 points ahead of the gruelling six-day TARGA Tasmania that will see competitors tackle 38 stages totaling more than 626 kilometres of competition.

Quinn is favourite to take his first Modern Outright national gong. The business and motor racing entrepreneur made a big splash at High Country with his Nissan, decorated for the first time in the striking fluro green colours.

That result came only days after it was announced that he had taken a 40 percent majority shareholding in the Brisbane-based Triple Eight Race Engineering Supercars squad.

The closest challenger is experienced dirt and tarmac rally driver Luke Anear, who with co-driver Andy Sarandis, sit on 90 points following solid results at both TARGA Great Barrier Reef and High Country.

A 43-point difference is decisive but by no means insurmountable given the unpredictability and relentless nature posed by the deciding TARGA Tasmania rally.

Quinn also leads GT Outright with a maximum haul of 140 points after winning the category at both TGBR and THC.

Melbourne-based Peter Gluskie and his regular co-driver Samantha Winter are leading Classic Outright after the opening two events of the three-event 2021 Motorsport Australia TARGA Championship.

The 1989 BMW 325i competitors are on 133 points, 32 ahead of Mark Griffith and Neil Woolley in their 1976 Datsun 1600.

Leaders in other classes are Tommy Monaghan/Alan Stephenson (GT Production), Bo Williams/Alice McKenzie (Early Modern 2), Dean Lillie/Steve Glenney and Andrew Horn/Sally Coning (equal in Early Modern 4), Peter Gluskie/Samantha Winter (Classic Handicap) and Mark Griffith/Neil Woolley (Classic GT).

The trophy class picture sees Darryl Marshall/Peter Marshall and Neville Emond/Stephen Jones share the lead in TSD Trophy, Paolo Buccini/Claire Buccini lead (GT Sports Trophy) while Tim Hall/Kym Hall and Brett Dillon/Geoffrey Corah are equal in Thoroughbred Trophy.

All classes will be decided at the forthcoming TARGA Tasmania.

The iconic event from April 19 to 24 has been heavily revised with a big increase in distance that sees the addition of new tests and old favorites. The opening stage of the event will be 5.80km run at High Plains.

07.02.2021

Lillie wins on TARGA debut

Sunday February 7, 2021

Dean Lillie has pulled off a remarkable feat to win the Mt Buller-based TARGA High Country tarmac rally in north-east Victoria.

Entering his first TARGA event, Lillie and the experienced Steve Glenney prevailed in their 2007 Mitsubishi Evo X in the three-day rally that encompassed 16 competitive stages.

The Victorian was in sizzling form right from the opening day after a master display of control and speed on some of TARGA’S most challenging roads to win overall and also land the Dutton Garage Early Modern 4 category.

Lillie and Glenney produced a polished performance to win by two minutes 27 seconds. The pair also cruised to victory in Dutton Garage Early Modern 4, ending just under three minutes ahead.

Tony Quinn and Kate Catford improved from their fourth position overnight to claim second outright in their 2018 Nissan GT-R. Liam and Larry Howarth slipped back a position to be third overall.

However it was Lillie who stole the show with a flawless and measured run.

“I’ve wanted to do this event since I first came to the Mt Buller Sprint back in the early days,” Lillie said of his stunning TARGA debut.

“The car held up well and we drove the wheels off it ever since the opening day when it was wet.

“The twisty Jamieson and Eildon stages today really suited the Evo and Steve (Glenney) has done an amazing job on the other side of the car.”

Glenney, who has a wealth of experience as a driver and co-driver, said their explicit preparation has paid dividends.

“As with everything we do, we came prepared because we always want to do the best job we can,” Glenney said.

“I suppose you could call it a bit of a giant-killing performance but we are not surprised that we have done so well.”

The order in GT Outright was shaken up after the opening stage off Mt Buller when Luke Anear and Andy Sarandis suffered a puncture in their 2018 Mercedes AMG GT R, cruelly dropping the pair from the lead.

It left 2020 TARGA Great Barrier Reef winner Tony Quinn and his co-driver Kate Catford to take victory in their 2018 Nissan GT-R. Anear fought back strongly in an inspired drive to finish third just behind Thomas Monghan/Alan Stephenson’s 2015 Subaru WRX.

In Classic Handicap, Melbourne competitors Peter Gluskie and Samantha Winter continued their dream form to win by forging clear in their 1989 BMW 325i to win by just over three minutes.

TARGA crews will now prepare for the next event, the showpiece TARGA Tasmania from April 19-24.


RESULTS FINAL (provisional)

Overall
1 Dean Lillie/Steve Glenney (2007 Mitsubishi Evo X)
2 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R R35) +2:27s
3 Liam Howarth/Larry Howarth (1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R) ++2:54s  
4 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) +4:13s
5 Thomas Monaghan/Alan Stephenson (2015 Subaru WRX) +4.25s

Mt Buller GT Outright
1 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R R35)
2 Thomas Monaghan/Alan Stephenson (2015 Subaru WRX) +1:58s
3 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2018 Mercedes AMG GT T) +3:22s

Classic Handicap
1 Peter Gluskie/Samantha Winter (1989 BMW 325i)
2 Paul Byrne/Colin Byrne (1975 Alfa Romeo GTV 2000) +3:04s
3 Philip-Jon Buggee/Paul Freame (1975 Fiat 131) +7:01s



Mansfield Shire GT Production
1 Thomas Monaghan/Alan Stephenson (2015 Subaru WRX)
2 Barrie Smith/Dale Moscatt (2017 Audi TTRS) +2:03s
3 Michael Minshall/Julie Winton-Monet (2011 Audi TTRS) +9:55s



Classic GT
1 Roger Lomman/Anne Bainbridge (1972 Datsun 240z)
2 Adam Kaplan/Aleshia Penney (1988 HSV Walkinshaw) +1:06s
3 Mark Griffith/Neil Woolley (1976 Datsun 1600) +2:30:43s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2
1 Adam Spence/Lee Challoner-Miles (2004 BMW M3 CSL)
2 Edward Merewether/Jennifer Gillott (2007 Renault Sport Megane F1 R26) +5:56s
3 David Blunden/Robert Sheppard (1997 Nissan Skyline) +7:36s 

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4
1 Dean Lillie/Steve Glenney (2007 Mitsubishi Evo X)
2 Liam Howarth/Larry Howarth (1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +2:54s
3 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) +4:13s

Mansfield Shire GT Sports Trophy
1 Simon Trude/Dion Morrison (2019 Lotus Exige 410 Sport)
2 Robert Bryden/Ian Noble (2000 Lotus Exige) +25s
3 Steven Sher/Fergal Murphy (2016 Lotus Exige) +2:07s

Mansfield Shire Thoroughbred Trophy
1 Brett Dillon/Geoffrey Corah (1973 Alfa Romeo 105)
2 Laura Rogers/Gavin Rogers (1957 Austin Healey 100/6) +3:26s
3 Robert Greig/Stephen Harris (1971 Datsun 240z) +15.45

TSD Trophy
1 Neville Emond/Stephen Jones (1996 Volvo 850R) 41pts
2 Tracy Hoven/Garth Davies (2018 Alpine A110) 43pts
3 Shane Navin/Glenn Evans (2018 Volkswagen Golf R) 55pts

06.02.2021

Lillie protects High Country overall advantage

Saturday February 6, 2021

The dream run of Dean Lillie and co-driver Steve Glenney has seen the pair edge to a decisive lead in overall standings after the second day of TARGA High Country.

Lillie and Glenney, in their 2007 Mitsubishi Evo X, have been in scintillating form across the opening two days, powering away from some of their more fancied rivals.

Following a day of eight competitive stages, the pair have squeezed out their lead to a one minute 12 seconds from Luke Anear and Andy Sarandis, driving a 2018 Mercedes-Benz AMG GT R. Liam and Larry Howarth are producing an impressive drive in their 1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R, and are just one second further back in third.

Lillie and Glenney also have a one minute 13 second lead over the Howarth Nissan in Dutton Garage Early Modern 4.

There was a concerted push from experienced rally ace Anear, in the 2018 Mercedes AMG GT R, who has moved to second place overall from his overnight sixth placing. He also leads GT Outright by 21 seconds from 2020 TARGA Great Barrier Reef winner Tony Quinn and Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R). Quinn is fourth in overall standings.

Anear said that as the day went on he found his rhythm.

“We are still learning how the car handles and the right suspension set-up,” Anear said.

“Everything stage is a learning stage. But I think we are in pretty good shape for tomorrow.

“We lost a lot of time yesterday in the rain. I’d never driven it in wet weather and it wasn’t a lot of fun going up and down the mountain yesterday.”

In Classic Handicap Peter Gluskie and Samantha Winter (1989 BMW 325i) moved into the lead early in the day and finished with a handy one minute six seconds buffer from Nik Prieston and Dylan Braithwaite (1976 Fiat 131 Abarth Rallye).

Adam Spence and co-driver Lee Challoner-Miles continued to open up the gap in Dutton Garage Early Modern 2 to lead by two minutes 40 seconds in their newly acquired 2004 BMW M3 CSL.

In Classic GT, Adam Kaplan and Aleshia Penney (1988 HSV Walkinshaw) have spread-eagled the depleted field to lead by more than 12 minutes.

Thomas Monaghan and Alan Stephenson (2015 Subaru WRX) are clutching a tidy lead of 46 seconds in Mansfield Shire GT Production.

In Mt Buller TSD Trophy, Neville Emond and Stephen Jones (1996 Volvo 850R) passed through stages eight and nine without penalty to lead the way with 19 points. 

Mansfield Shire GT Sports Trophy is led by Simon Trude and Dion Morrison (2019 Lotus Exige 410 Sport) who have a 20 second lead.

RESULTS – END OF DAY 2 of 3 (Provisional)

Overall
1 Dean Lillie/Steve Glenney (2007 Mitsubishi Evo X)
2 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2018 Mercedes AMG GT R) +1:12s
3 Liam Howarth/Larry Howarth (1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +1:13s 
4 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R R35) +1:33s
5 Thomas Monaghan/Alan Stephenson (2015 Subaru WRX) +1:53s
6 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) +2:11s

Mt Buller GT Outright
1 Luke Anear/Andy Sarandis (2018 Mercedes AMG GT R) 
2 Tony Quinn/Kate Catford (2018 Nissan GT-R R35) +21s
3 Thomas Monaghan/Alan Stephenson (2015 Subaru WRX) +41s

Classic Handicap
1 Peter Gluskie/Samantha Winter (1989 BMW 325i) 
2 Nik Prieston/Dylan Braithwaite (1976 Fiat 131 Abarth Rallye) +1:06s
3 Brian Dermott/Linda Dermott (1961 Austin Healey 3000 Mk2) +2:39s

Mansfield Shire GT Production
1 Thomas Monaghan/Alan Stephenson (2015 Subaru WRX)
2 Barrie Smith/Dale Moscatt (2017 Audi TTRS) +46s
3 Maxwell Williams/Peter Bush (2013 Audi TTRS) +1:46s

Classic GT
1 Adam Kaplan/Aleshia Penney (HSV Walkinshaw)
2 Roger Lomman/Anne Bainbridge (1972 Datsun 240z) +12:29s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 2
1 Adam Spence/Lee Challoner-Miles (2004 BMW M3 CSL)
2 Edward Merewether/Jennifer Gillott (2007 Renault Sport Megane F1 R26) +2:40s
3 Stephen Crowe/Richard Crowe (1998 Mazda RX-7) +3:27s

Dutton Garage Early Modern 4
1 Dean Lillie/Steve Glenney (2007 Mitsubishi Evo X)
2 Liam Howarth/Larry Howarth (1995 Nissan Skyline GT-R) +1:13s
3 Geoffrey Hewitt/Toni Hewitt (2009 Nissan GT-R) +2:11s

Mansfield Shire GT Sports Trophy
1 Simon Trude/Dion Morrison (2019 Lotus Exige 410 Sport)
2 Robert Bryden/Ian Noble (2000 Lotus Exige) +20s
3 Steven Sher/Fergal Murphy (2016 Lotus Exige) +1:32s

Mansfield Shire Thoroughbred Trophy
1 John Stanton/Philip Blake (1981 Porsche 924 Turbo)
2 Brett Dillon/Geoffrey Corah (1973 Alfa Romeo 105) +1:23s
3 Laura Rogers/Gavin Rogers (1957 Austin Healey 100/6) +2:06s

TSD Trophy
1 Neville Emond/Stephen Jones (1996 Volvo 850R) 19pts
2 Shane Navin/Glenn Evans (2018 Volkswagen Golf R) 24pts
3 Tracy Hoven/Garth Davies (2018 Alpine A110) 25pts

Media contact details
Ian Chesterman – 0417 530902
Gordon Lomas – 0419 733 995

06.02.2021

Wild Weather lashes TARGA High Country Start

04.02.2021

UK-sourced lightweight M3 to debut at High Country

04.02.2021

TARGA HIGH COUNTRY COURSE REVAMPED

04.02.2021

TARGA High Country marks midpoint in Championship

04.02.2021

Quinn spearheads TARGA High Country entries

29.10.2020

TARGA 2020 for rookies

06.10.2020

TARGA High Country 2020 Postponed

After the stunning success of running TARGA Great Barrier Reef last month in spite of the current COVID-19 restrictions, we have remained extremely hopeful of being able to run TARGA High Country in mid-November.  Unfortunately, Victoria is in a different situation to Queensland at the moment and with still uncertain signs on the horizon; along with a clear window of opportunity to simply move the event dates; we have today taken the decision to postpone the running of the 11th TARGA High Country to 5 to 7 February 2021.

Even though Victoria may be re-opened by mid-November, it is clear already that most other states will continue to insist on 14 days of quarantining for anyone who visits Victoria from another state, which severely hinders a number of people from attending this event.  In moving the date back, not weeks but months, it will give us the best opportunity to ensure that TARGA High Country will be as big as it has been over a number of years with more than 150 cars turning up to compete and another 50 enjoying the TARGA Tour experience.

Thank you to the many customers who have reached out since TARGA Great Barrier Reef to acknowledge our `against the odds’ delivery of our Cairns based event and if we had the same level of confidence in the COVID situation in Victoria, we would continue to push ahead with our plans.  The reality of greater confidence coming in 2021; which in turn will hopefully see more competitors able to attend; has made the decision at this point to postpone the event an obvious one.

With the event now pushed back a few months, we will re-open Early Bird entries until Midnight this Friday 9 October. Be sure to grab the discount this week, simply by entering and paying your deposit.  Entries will now close on 15 January 2021. We sincerely appreciate your ongoing support in what has been a very unique year for everyone.  A year that for TARGA has seen a cancellation, a successful running and now a postponement in the ever-changing landscape of COVID restrictions and border closures.

Enter here.

22.09.2020

TARGA Great Barrier Reef secured for three more years

Following on from the running of a successful TARGA Great Barrier Reef this month, a new three-year deal has been made with both state and local governments which secures the event’s future in Tropical North Queensland until at least 2023. 

The Cairns-based event started in 2018 and for much of 2020, the final year of the initial three-year government contract, it looked in doubt because of the impact of the COVID-19 crisis both in Australia and overseas.

But TARGA Australia managed to restructure its rally and the associated activities to pull off a COVID-compliant event warmly received by the competitors and the community.

TARGA Australia CEO, Mark Perry, said he was thrilled that the 2020 event had proceeded and delighted to know TARGA Great Barrier Reef had a strong future with the on-going commitment of both Tourism and Events Queensland and the Cairns Regional Council.

“The on-going support from Tourism and Events Queensland and the Cairns Regional Council is absolutely fantastic and allows us to continue to plan for the future,” Perry said.

“We are enormously grateful to the Minister for State Development, Tourism and Innovation, Kate Jones, and also to Cairns Mayor, Bob Manning.

“This region is the perfect location for an event like ours. Great roads, welcoming communities and the real ability to bring economic benefits to the regional areas around Cairns as well as to the city itself.

“There is no doubt getting the event in 2020 off the ground pushed us to the limit, but we were absolutely determined to do it,” Perry said.

“We had great support from the local volunteers and from our Queensland competitor base, and we even had a few from interstate go into quarantine just to make it to the start line.

“And the old adage that necessity is the mother of all invention made us look at things differently in 2020. As we were unable to run the highly successful TARGAFest on The Esplanade, we decided to take the cars to the people instead with the 27-kilometre TARGAcavalcade through the suburbs and the city.”

“That innovation has received rave reviews, so we will certainly look to keep it place for future as well as hopefully bringing TARGAfest back in 2021.”

“We can’t thank everyone enough for helping us keep TARGA Great Barrier Reef alive in 2020, and I’m absolutely convinced that the event has a big future.”

Member for Cairns Michael Healy said the event had performed strongly over the past three years, delivering more than $3 million and 8700 visitor nights for local businesses in 2019.

“This government has a clear strategy to rebuild our economy and safeguard local jobs. Events will play an important part in our plan,” he said.

“Despite the impact of COVID-19, this year’s rally hosted hundreds of drivers and support crews from around Australia.

“Today I’m happy to confirm we’ve inked a deal to keep this event running – pumping millions of dollars into local businesses – from 2021 to 2023.

Tourism Minister Kate Jones said motor rallies had huge appeal throughout Australia.

“No other tarmac motor rally race overlooks the Great Barrier Reef and takes in the amazing scenery of the Coral Sea coastline between Tully and Port Douglas,” she said.

“This event provide thousands of tourists yet another reason to come to the Far North.”

Tourism and Events Queensland Chief Executive Officer Mark Olsen said the organisation was delighted to extend its support to TARGA Great Barrier Reef.

“Cairns has a reputation for delivering world-class sporting events which will be crucial for the economic recovery of the region,” he said.

Cairns Mayor, Bob Manning, was also delighted that event will call his city home for an extended period.

“It is fantastic that Cairns will be home to the TARGA Great Barrier Reef tarmac rally for another three years,” Mayor Manning said.

“This Council is committed to supporting high profile and successful events that are of public interest, attract visitors to our region and lift community spirit.

“The value of events tourism – in particular sports tourism – cannot be understated, and the inclusion of TARGA Great Barrier Reef continues to build on our reputation as the home of dynamic and prized events.

“Over the past three years, this event has become a ‘must-do’ on the rally circuit and I am confident it will continue to grow; not surprising when you consider there is no other place in Australia offers such a breathtaking backdrop for such an iconic event.”

The 2021 running of TARGA Great Barrier Reef is set for September 3 to 5 next year, with the 2022 event scheduled for September 2 to 4 and 2023 for September 1 to 3.

18.09.2020

Race for TARGA Championship points off and running

Competitors have banked their first allocation of points towards the Motorsport Australia TARGA Championship following the maiden TARGA event of 2020, TARGA Great Barrier Reef in Cairns recently.

At the top of the leaderboard across the categories there is a mix of familiar and fresh faces.

Circuit and TARGA veteran Tony Quinn and co-driver Brian Foster are the leaders in Modern Outright following their all-the-way win in North Queensland in their 2018 Nissan GT-R.

They have accumulated 70 points to lead Modern Outright by seven points from Atherton Tablelands pair Andrew Horn and Sally Coning (1998 Mitsubishi Lancer Evo V).

Quinn/Foster also have a seven point edge over Luke Anear and Andy Sarandis in GT Outright after the latter’s Mercedes AMG GT-R encountered a glitch which starved the supercar of producing full power in its TARGA debt.

Classic Outright sees Peter Gluskie and Samantha Winter (1985 BMW 325i) in the lead from Lindsay Stone and Simon Martin (1989 Mazda RX-7) by seven points respectively.

The standings are the same for the Classic class as well.

The results were rich reward for the Melbourne pair who went to extraordinary lengths to gain exemptions and quarantine in the lead-up to the event which was hit with a depleted field due to the border restrictions.

In the other classes, well-known Sunshine Coast car collector Dan Bowden and co-driver Tiffanie Hepburn (1965 Ford Shelby Mustang) leads the standings in Classic GT on 70 points with Mark Griffith and Ryan Preston (1969 Datsun 1600 SSS) on 63 points following the non-finish of several leading competitors.

Cairns builder Steve Van der Brug and Linda Rankine (2009 Subaru WRX STi) are on top of the GT Production standings with 70 points, 7 ahead of fellow Cairns competitor Murray Young and Scott Griffin who debuted their 2012 BMW M3.

Following dramas on the final day, Bo Williams and Dirk Witteveen (2001 BMW M3) eventually made it to the final time control to earn maximum points to lead the1993 Daihatsu Charade pair of Michael and Brian Walsh in Early Modern 2.

The Early Modern 4 standings see Andrew Horn and Sally Coning top the class on 70 points ahead of Gregg and Callum Taylor (2008 Subaru WRX) on 63 points.

The hard working combination of Darryl and Peter Marshall (2002 Ford Pursuit Ute) lead TSD Trophy standings by seven points from Agim Selita and Gezim Bashi (2007 BMW M5).

Marshall and the BMW pair were locked in a tight battle on the final day, both conceding just two points each in the highly competitive class.

“We were trying a new timer in the car and were getting used to the way it counts down and it was a matter of fine-tuning. But we managed to find the sweet spot,” Darryl Marshall said.

The situation in the other trophy classes sees Wayne Udy and Mia Williams (2019 Lotus Exige 410 Sport) lead GT Sports Trophy after their remarkable run at TARGA Great Barrier Reef where they were third outright. The pair are on 70 points with Rob Oshlack and Neysa Ellison (2017 Ford Focus RS), seven points back in second. While in Thoroughbred Trophy, Tim and Kym Hall (1980 Holden Commodore) claimed the maximum 70 points to lead Paul Frank and Leo Rodriguez 1988 Mazda RX-7 who earned 63 points.

The Motorsport Australia TARGA Championship will continue with Round 2 at TARGA High Country which will be based in Mansfield/Mt Buller in Victoria from November 13-15.

View the current points table here.