New Targa Event Well Received
Targa New Zealand
'The Ultimate Road Race'
Sat March 02
New Targa Event Well Received
Targa New Zealand's new one-day Rallysprint event on Saturday was well-received with 50 crews taking the opportunity to spend the day running through a 9.9km stage on Kohekohe-Kariotahi Road near Waiuku south-west of Auckland.
The fastest pair through the stage were Targa event regulars Harry Dodson and Glen Cupit in their Dodson Motorsport Nissan GT-R35 Supercar with a best time of 0:04:44. Fellow Aucklander Jason Gill (who took the opportunity afforded by the new event to put several different people in the co-driver's seat) was next best just two seconds slower in his Mitsubishi Evo 9.
The field was split into fives classes, with Dodson and Cupit winning Group 5 for Allcomer 4WD cars, Tony Butler (Holden Cheetah) winning the 4200cc + Group 4, Melbourne-based Kiwi expat Richard Scoular (Mazda RX7) the 3001-4200cc Group 3, and Auckland women Gina Fabrello (BMW E36) the 2001-3000cc Group 2 and Carol Liston (Honda CRX) 0-2000cc Group 1.
Traditionally, Targa events are run over a minimum of two days with timed special stages over closed roads linked by long transport sections on public roads.
By closing one, shorter, stage and running crews to and from it via a central parc ferme in Waiuku, Targa New Zealand Event Director Peter Martin says he was trying to achieve two things.
One was to give Targa regulars a chance to test and tune their cars under typical Targa conditions before the season's multi-day events.
The other was to give those interested in competing in an event like this years' three-day Targa Rotorua in May or four-day Targa New Zealand in October a chance to see what tarmac road rallying is all about.
Harry Dodson and Jason Gill certainly liked the idea.
"It's definitely good for us," Dodson said during a break between runs."We're here to test some new components for the car so an event like this gives us a chance to come back, download our data, make some changes then go back out again. The stage here is good too, not too long, not too short, just right!
Like Dodson and Cupit, Gill was also enjoying just being back in his Targa car.
"For me," he said, "it's more of a chance to get my eye in again, and take some people who ordinarily would never get the chance, to see what an event like Targa is all about."
One of Gill's guests was visiting Englishman James Caldwell who said the ride was 'right up my street.
"It was exactly what I expected," he said, "definitely a 'hold-on-tight' sort or ride. It's got me hooked!"
The Rallysprint event was also a first for Targa New Zealand's new official charity, Kids In Cars, and charity spokesman Nigel Karl says he couldn't be happier with how the day went.
"It was absolutely fantastic," he said."We had people from all over the place, Waiuku, Pukekohe, we even had a family that had come from Helensville. We had our car and we had our free family fun zone. It was full-on all day."
The focus for Targa competitors now turns to the three-day Targa Rotorua between May 10 and 12 and the the four-day Targa New Zealand event between October 31 and November 03.
2013 Targa Rallysprint Waiuku Sat March 02
Group 1 (0-2000cc)
1. Carol Liston (1990 Honda CRX) 0:05:21
2. Rob Ryan (1986 Toyota Corolla AE86) 0:05:28
3. Ken Northin (1975 Ford Escort 0:05:30
4. Tony Callighan (1988 Daihatsu Charade) 0:05:32
5. John Tee (1975 Toyota TA22) 0:05:42
6. Grant Shirley (1996 Honda Integra DC2) 0:05:44
7. Brent Hills (1976 Ford Escort) 0:05:46
8. Gordon Foss/Kevyn Cousens (2004 BMW Mini) 0:05:47
9. Neville Smith (1991 Nissan Primera) 0:05:47
10. Michael Moros (1990 BMW E30 320i) 0:05:53
11. Rowan Morgan (1973 Ford Escort MK1) 0:06:01
12. Graham MacDonald (1990 BMW E30) 0:06:01
13. Euen Burke (2007 T Car TG Sports) 0:06:03
14. Gary Corbett (1991 Honda Civic) 0:06:12
15. Colin Pauling (1972 Ford Escort Mk 2 RS2000) 0:06:17
16. Bryan Hawthorn (1971 Fiat 124 Sport) 0:06:17
17. John Mulrennan (1986 BMW 320i) 0:06:19
18. Chris Alexander (1969 Ford Cortina MK2) 0:06:20
19. Robert Wolff (1986 BMW 320i) 0:06:31
1. Gina Fabrello (1996 BMW E36) 0:05:24
2. Anton Tallott (1978 Mazda RX7) 0:05:27
3. Andy Mygind (1972 Datsun 240Z) 0:05:34
4. Steve Kirk Burnnand (1989 BMW M3) 0:05:37
5. Raymond Dufton (2001 BMW E46 325) 0:05:42
6. Carl Kirk-Burnnand (1991 BMW 325i) 0:05:43
7. Dave MacRae (Porsche 944) 0:05:51
8. Richard Haakma (1986 Porsche 944) 0:06:04
9. Zaf Khouri (1992 Honda Prelude) 0:06:05
10. Kim Mcleod (1979 Mazda RX7) 0:07:02
1. Richard Scoular (1997 Mazda RX7) 0:05:21
2. Mike Sexton (1996 BMW M3 E36) 0:05:23
3. George Randle (2000 Porsche Boxster) 0:05:24
4. Barry Hare (2002 BMW Mini Cooper) 0:05:24
5. Graham Browne (2006 Renault Megane R26) 0:05:26
6. Mark Christensen (2006 Renault Megan FIR) 0:05:29
7. Gordon Smith (1997 BMW M3) 0:05:37
1. Tony Butler (1972 Holden Cheetah) 0:05:29
2. Bob Boniface (2008 BMW 135i) 0:05:29.8
3. Barry Kirk-Burnnand (2008 BMW 135i) 0:05:30.1
4. Allan Lewis (1972 Datsun 240Z):0:05:32
5. Grant Loch (Cheetah S2) 0:06:05
6. Dave Abetz (Toyota MR2) 0:06:16
1. Harry Dodson (2007 Nissan GT-R35) 0:04:44
2. Jason Gill (2005 Mistubishi Evo 9 GT) 0:4:46
3. Brian Green (2013 Mitsubishi Evo 10) 0:05:09.6
4. Kim Blatchley (1999 Subaru Impreza RA) 0:05:10.5
5. Chris Maindonald (2004 Subaru WRX STI) 0:05:22
6. Brian Chadwick (1996 Subaru Impreza) 0:05:23
7. Graeme Coley (2001 Audi RS4) 0:05:26
8. Chris Lane (2004 Audi RS4) 0:06:14
For more information go to www.targa.co.nz.