Targa High Coun­try rally re­turn­ing to town

Euroa Gazette - - CLASSIFIEDS -

THE an­nual Targa High Coun­try re­turns to the north east this week­end for three days of fast- paced rally ac­tion.

Nearly 140 cars will head off from Mount Buller on Fri­day morn­ing, ahead of 18 closed road tar­mac stages, with some of the coun­try’s best tar­mac rally driv­ers in ac­tion.

Now in its eighth year, Targa High Coun­try is one of the most an­tic­i­pated events on the rally cal­en­dar. Com­peti­tors love the di­ver­sity of the stages, in­clud­ing the ex­cit­ing street stage around Mansfield on Satur­day af­ter­noon.

Fri­day’s route heads from Mount Buller to Euroa and back, with Bin­ney Street closed to traf­fic during the morn­ing.

On Satur­day the event winds its way to Whitfield and back, while the fi­nal day, Sun­day, sees crews tackle the test­ing roads to and from Eil­don.

The high­light of this year’s event will be the Mansfield street stage from 2.30pm on Satur­day af­ter­noon, fol­lowed by the pop­u­lar Tar­gafest at 4.00pm.

In the bat­tle for over­all hon­ours for­mer Targa Tas­ma­nia win­ner, Matt Close, heads the list of con­tenders in his 2017 Porsche GT3, and in the ab­sence of fierce ri­val and mul­ti­ple Targa win­ner Ja­son White, Close will be the man to catch.

Close’s clos­est chal­lenger is likely to be lo­cal Shep­par­ton driver, Alan Roe, driv­ing a 2016 BMW M2. This is Roe’s home Targa event, and he’ll be ea­ger to put on a good show for his lo­cal fans, and come home with a podium fin­ish – and pos­si­bly even an up­set win.

With dry con­di­tions ex­pected, the two-wheel drive Porsches sev­en­time Bathurst, and eight-time Targa Tas­ma­nia win­ner Jim Richards (911 GT3 RS), Peter Nunn ( GTS) and John Ire­land will all be bat­tling it out for a top five fin­ish.

How­ever, if the spring weather lives up to its rep­u­ta­tion and rain is en­coun­tered, then you can add into the mix the four-wheel drive bri­gade.

An­gus Ken­nard and his 2015 Nis­san GTR should be the fastest, but Bar­rie Smith’s 2017 Audi TT RS and Ed Kreamer’s 2008 Mit­subishi Lancer Evo X are among many who will also be there or there­abouts.

While the modern cars should set the out­right pace, the bat­tle through­out the clas­sic ranks will be one that en­thrals spec­ta­tors who line the route.

Matt Sel­ley’s 1985 Hartge H35-24 is one to watch as will be the bat­tle be­tween vet­eran Roger Lom­man’s 1971 Dat­sun 240Z and Mansfield’s own com­bi­na­tion of Brian and Linda Der­mott are sure to at­tract the big­gest cheers in their 1971 Holden To­rana XU1.

An­other lo­cal, Al­bury TV and ra­dio per­son­al­ity, Steve Bowen, will be out to im­press in his brightly coloured Mit­subishi Lancer Evo X.

Targa High Coun­try also in­cludes a speed-lim­ited GT Sports Tro­phy cat­e­gory, in which reg­u­lar win­ner, Alan Gluyas, will be the man to catch in his 2014 Re­nault Me­gane. He’ll come un­der strong pres­sure from Martin Du­ursma’s 2013 Lo­tus Ex­ige V6.

There’s also a big en­try in the Targa High Coun­try Tour, where cars with­out roll cages can com­plete the full course.

Strictly speed lim­ited, the tour in­cludes a group of cars from the De­latite Car Club, with club mem­bers keen to ex­pe­ri­ence what Targa High Coun­try has to of­fer.

For full spec­ta­tor and event de­tails about this year’s Targa High Coun­try, in­clud­ing road clo­sure in­for­ma­tion, visit the event’s web­site at www. targa.com.au

TARGA TAKES OVER: Bin­ney Street will be filled with cars once again be­tween 11am to 2pm on Fri­day.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.