ST. JOHN’S, NL – A stellar collection of proven and new competitors in four categories will battle it out over five days and more than 2,000 kilometres as Targa Newfoundland 2013, Canada’s longest and toughest motorsport challenge, takes to the road on Monday. A high quality field, including at least four repeat category winners, will contest the 12th annual Targa Newfoundland – a scenario sure to produce tight competition in every class.
The headline Modern Division is set to be a contest among new and proven competitors, as two-time winners and local favourites Matthew and Brian Oldford of St. John’s, in their Subaru, face the powerful Mustang of American novices Dan and Tina Aweida and the fast-but-fragile Lotus of Stan Hartling of the Turks and Caicos Islands with local co-driver Andy Proudfoot of Gander, Newfoundland.
The Modern hopefuls will have to outpace former Open Division winners Jim Kenzie (Ontario) and Brian Bourbonnierre (Nova Scotia) in their Kia Optima, while Kia team mates Jacques Deshaies and Guy McKenzie (Quebec) in their Kia Forte Koup will sure to be in the mix.
The Classic Division, for cars up to model year 1981, looks like a direct fight between the experienced Targa team of Chip Brunner and Mark Laitenberger, of the US, and sophomores Ben Gill and Dave Didcock of the UK. Brunner’s 1965 Mustang and Gill’s 1978 Ford Escort met last year with the British team finishing ahead.
The Grand Touring competition is set to be a rematch of three of the top teams of 2012. John Hume (Ontario) with local navigator Justin Crant, in a new MINI GP, face tough competition from the teams of Jon Riddell and Briar DeLange (Ontario) in a BMW, and Craig MacMullen and Justin Russell (Nova Scotia/Newfoundland) in another MINI.
A daily news summary from Targa 2013 will be distributed by 5:30pm Eastern (7:00pm in Newfoundland), as well as posted to the event’s website www.targanewfoundland.com and on the event’s Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/targaNL
Owned and operated by Newfoundland International Motorsports Limited, Targa Newfoundland is one of three internationally recognized Targa motorsports events in the world. The 2013 competition starts in St. John’s on September 14 and concludes back in the capital on September 21. The 12th annual rally will cover more than 2,000 kilometres of the challenging, twisty roads of the central and eastern portion of Newfoundland, including up to 450 kilometres of closed-road, flat-out Targa stages.
From Darren Sheppard // www.targanewfoundland.com