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Drivers quotes - Day 2

Here are quotes from some of our leading drivers after Day 2.

DARRYL MARSHALL – We’ve changed to the car from last year, but we didn’t have a chance to test out those improvements until the Sideling stage on Monday, which made things very interesting.
It’s not the best place to test a ute in the wet.
For the last four years, our goal has been to lose three or less points per stage.
If we can do that, we reckon we’ll be somewhere near the top.
Our goal on day one was 21 points and we ended up with 19, so we’re under par and if we can maintain that for the event, we’ll be more than happy.

RICHARD WOODMAN – Like most drivers we had a few moments in the slippery conditions on day one, but the car’s performing better than we expected, so I’m happy to be up with times similar to last year’s winners
Our tyre strategy is working well – we rotated the tyres at the end of day one and we’ll put some new fronts on at Burnie before the West Coast.

JEFF BEABLE – There’s a low flying Lotus in our class that no-one is going to catch – he is seriously quick.
We have to be realists – we normally drive comfortably within ourselves and we know it’s a six day event, so we’ll just wait and see.

JEFF MORTON – This is my first Targa Tasmania and my first time on pace notes.
My only previous rally experience was in TSD at Targa High Country in a different car.
This car only had 400km on it at the start of the event and I’d never driven it in the wet, so to be where we are - surprised and happy to be in the lead.
We had a great first day and we were only going at 7-8 tenths so everything was under control.
I’ve learned very quickly you have to trust the notes and the bloke reading them to you – Dennis is a great navigator and I think we’ve really gelled together in a fantastic car.

MATT CLOSE – It’s still early days, but we’re really happy with where we are.
In the dry, I’m massively comfortable with the car – it’s not too different to last year’s car, but just with a bit more grip, so if it’s dry, we’re happy to go hard at it.
In the wet, I’m being very cautious.
We’ve got a hard tyre on and we’ll just manage that as best we can and hang in there.

JASON WHITE – We’re very happy with it so far – we just need a bit more rain so we can be confident with our tyre wear.
We’ve got a couple of good days of really good dry pace in the tyres, but it would have to be the last two days.
If it was the next two days, it would start to make us a bit nervous.
We know what the capabilities of the tyres are – they are very fast, but for a very limited period of time.
If it was a lot more drier, I don’t think we’d be able to pull away, but just aim to stay in touch.
A lot’s going to do with the weather - we love driving on these tyres in the dry, but they don’t just have a lot of life.
The car is good in the wet, so we won’t be disappointed with more rain.

JON SIDDINS – I’m very surprised to be where we are outright.
I don’t know what’s going on there – the four-wheel drives should be a mile in front of us.
Our Dunlop tyres have been brilliant – they brought us in some medium (compound) tyres we couldn’t get before and they worked very well in the wet.
The engine had a bit of a freshen up with Les Collins Racing and it feels good.
We’ve also made a few minor wheel alignment changes, but it’s a good balanced car for the chassis.

BEN MANION – I’m very happy where we are – I’m still changing my driving style as we go because it’s been so long since I’ve sat in the car, but hopefully we’ll pick up some pace later in the week as I improve.
The weather isn’t an issue for me – I’m happy either way.
I’m more concerned about getting onto some flowing roads on the North-West Coast – they’re my favourite stages.

PETER ULLRICH – We’re ecstatic – we had to get a derived time on the Sideling because we helped a car on fire and we got a terrific derived time, so we are very pleased.
The car feels nice and safe – the old girl is being pushed, but we’re as satisfied as you can be this early in the event.

MICHAEL PRITCHARD – I didn’t expect to be so close to the lead this early and I’m pleasantly surprised.
I think there’s going to be a few lead changes, and ups and downs all around tyre conservation for the rest of the week.
Jason (White) has the same tyres as me, but he’s got a bit more aero, so he will be quicker than me in some parts.
I’d expect him to be quicker than me by the end of the day and I won’t be trying to catch him.

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