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What the drivers said … Day 5

Our intrepid stage reporter caught up with some of the leading contenders after another intense day of competition ahead of the gripping conclusion to Targa Tasmania tomorrow.

Guy and John Lilleyman leading Early Modern in their Mitsubishi Evo 9. Photo credit. Angryman Photography.


PAUL STOKELL: I hope we’ve got a good enough lead to win. We got through the wet bits today which suited us, which was ideal to build a lead and try to keep it there.

We’re not going to do anything silly from here on and hopefully we can hang on.

MATT CLOSE: We’ve had a pretty relaxing day and it was all about bringing it home in the wet.

I’ve got nothing for Paul (Stokell) in the wet and he’s doing a great job.

It didn’t matter even if we were 10 percent quicker in the wet, we just weren’t going to match him.


ANGUS KENNARD: Matt (Close) is pretty quick in the dry, so we’ll just be doing our best to hang on to second place.

The conditions have been pretty slippery, which has suited us and the car’s been going well.

We’ve just got to hang on and keep going.


MICK DOWNEY: Rules are rules, so we’re still there, but morally it’s not how I want to be in the lead. I did have an ‘off’ and the rules say I can still be in the hunt, but it doesn’t feel right, plus it’s directly affected a great mate.

I’m going to have a beer and sleep on it.

MICHAEL BRAY: We’re not sure about the rules about derived times after Mick (Downey’s) crash, so we’ve got to push on as much as we can.

It’s still a great battle.


GUY LILLEYMAN: The wet stages suited us quite well, so we just did our thing and consolidated our lead.

We enjoyed the roads today and we’d have to do something crazy to lose from here, so we’re planning to avoid anything like that at all costs.


NIK PRIESTON: We had a solid day and we’ve got a good lead, but I’ve got to keep everything together. A lot can still happen. We haven’t won it yet and we’d be crazy to think we have.

You can’t afford to take anything for granted in Targa Tasmania.

PETER GLUSKIE: We’ve been swapping fastest stage times with Nik Prieston all day today.

It’s been an up and down event for us so far. He’s been winning the wet ones and I’ve been having a harder go on the dry ones.

He’s got a good gap and it will be hard to pick it up, but the final is my home turf having grown up in Hobart, so who knows what will happen.


STEVEN SHER: It’s still tight, but it’s fun too and we’re having fun.

We’re not confident we can hang on to the lead, as this is our first competitive rally, so we’re still working out what we’re doing, but we’re going to give it a shot.


TYSON COWIE: We’re just plodding along, hoping to finish tomorrow and make it through the week.

It’s our first time in Targa Tasmania and we came here with the intention of finishing.


PETER TAYLOR: The battle between us and the Marshalls is the toughest thing ever.

Really, really tough.

We’re both trying so hard and when you look at last year’s event, the gap between first and second was over double what it is now.

The Marshalls have set a whole new level for this type of event and we have to match it.

All you have to do is make one little mistake of a half of a second and you’ve lost it.

DARRYL MARSHALL: We had a bit of a brain fade on the Molesworth stage and it’s cost us the lead.

We’ll deal with it and push on and keep going for our fourth in a row.

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