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Rare motor Targa-bound

Bruce and Gail Absolon are back and raring to hit the track with a brand new set of wheels.

Keeping the iconic blue of Team Whitsunday's past cars, the racing power couple's new rig throws some eye-catching orange into the mix to put their region on the map.

Bruce and Gail Absolon with their Porsche Turbo S outside Repco at Whitsunday Plaza on Saturday. The local couple will compete in the Australian Targa Road Racing Championship later this month

The rare 2005 Porsche Turbo S, affectionately named 'Rufus', replaces the Absolon's classic 1994 SL500 Mercedes Sport they raced previously.

The pair complete each other as when they became husband and wife five years ago, they also became teammates, although Bruce has been racing cars since the mid-1970s.

Gail sits in the passenger seat as the navigator and Bruce reacts to the pace notes while catapulting the car around tight tarmac corners.

Next month the Cannonvale residents will race in the Targa Great Barrier Reef Championship on August 31 to September 2 in Cairns, a feat the couple said they could not do without the help of local sponsors.

"A big thank you to PD Law, RSG Group, RPF Builders as well as Whitsunday Sporting Car Club president Ross Angelo, who is our race engineer and helps us with all the preparation,” Bruce said.

The inaugural event will be the first Targa competition held in Queensland and the event name joins two iconic brands under the one banner. The course covers more than 200 competitive kilometres, including the range roads out of Cairns and Port Douglas.

"We were the first entries,” Gail laughed.

"I just love racing, being the navigator he has to listen to me ... or else.”

Bruce said he loved the Targa class racing because of the challenge.

"I used to race maxi yachts and coming from a crew of 18 to just us two is different,” he said.

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