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What they said – the leaders on Day 2

Our Targa reporter caught up with some of the leading drivers from across the classes at the end of Day 2 of Targa Great Barrier Reef.

Michael and Daniel Bray lead Classic GT. Photo: Angryman Photography

JOHN COLEMANThoroughbred Trophy

We’ve come into this event totally unprepared and on a tight budget, so we don’t have any pace notes.

The stages on Day One suited our visual style of navigating yesterday, but the first five stages today was a completely different story and I was kicking myself, so we fully expect to be overtaken tomorrow, unless I can find some pace notes tonight.

The car is going brilliant – it’s a fairly standard 1983 Alfa Romeo GTV, but I wouldn’t even consider it again without pace notes.

TONY QUINN – Early Modern

We had brake and turbo problems during Targa Tasmania, but everything seems to be going okay so far this weekend.

The car didn’t start the first morning, so that was a bit of a worry, but we got it going and it’s been faultless ever since, so we’ve worked up a pretty good lead.

It’s nice to have a Targa event in my home state and this one is as good as any of them – it’s got something for everyone.

MARK BALCOMBE– GT4

 It’s pretty close and we should be further in front– we had a few minor incidents here and there and a couple of potential offs. We made a fairly major mistake on the third stage when we braked 200m early for a speed zone and lost about 15 seconds.

The sign said 200m to the zone and we thought it was the start of the zone.

Apart from that, everything with the car’s been good, so we will be aiming to build on a few stages tomorrow and our aim is to try and win it by 30 or 40 seconds.

Based on the times the competitors behind are doing, we think it’s achievable.

JASON WHITE– GT2 and Outright

We’re happy we’ve been able to extend our lead a bit today.

The first stage tomorrow is one we’d earmarked as our best chance and it really suits our Dodge Viper, so we’ll be hoping to get some more time there. But the rest of the stages up on the Atherton Tableland are very tight, narrow, tricky and treacherous ones, so we’ll have to work hard.

The air conditioning is just holding up and I said before the event this was going to be one a navigator would play a bigger role in winning. John’s doing a great job with that.

We reckon our cabin temperature is up around 40 degrees and keeping the liquids up in between the stages is very important to re-hydrate.

It’s a great event with awesome roads and the vibe from the locals has been great. There’s been lots of spectators everywhere we go.

PAUL STOKELL – GT2 and Outright

The Viper is a weapon and we’re struggling on anything which goes uphill where they have a real horsepower advantage, and that’s showing on the times.

To be honest I’m not out there trying to race Jason and that was never the plan.

We’ll give him a challenge wherever we can do so safely, but it’s all about the championship for us, so if we’re finishing somewhere close behind the Whites then we’re looking pretty good.

Potentially we could come away from this weekend with the outright and GT2 championship lead, so we’re playing the long game really.

JEFF MORTON – GT2 and Outright

I couldn’t be happier. I had no expectation to be in the place I’m in.

I’m really loving the roads

I got my first ever outright stage win today on the Lake Morris stage and that was incredible.

I’d come back here next year just to do that road again.

I’m really comfortable in the car and I’ve got a really experienced navigator and it’s made a big difference.

We’re not taking any unnecessary risks and we haven’t had a single moment the whole time.”

DARRYL MARSHALL – TSD Trophy

We haven’t even checked to see if we were leading or not so it’s good to hear we’re in front.

This event has been very, very different to any other tarmac rally we’ve ever done before.

The roads are tight and twisty and more technically challenging than anything we’ve done before, and the way the locals have embraced this event up here is amazing.

MARK MELETOPOULO – GT Sports Trophy

This event has been really suiting our Lotus.

The roads have been brilliant and they seem to suit that little type of car with plenty of grunt.

We came from behind and had a bit of a blinder today.

This is only our second full Targa event after High Country last year and this is actually my road car.

It’s performing brilliantly and it hasn’t missed a beat.

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