Targa Tasmania: Close in the box seat as White retires
Matt Close is on the verge of a maiden Targa Tasmania win after Jason White retired from the event mid-way through the penultimate day of running.
Close and White have been locked in battle in the GT2 class throughout the event, however the contest is now decided after White’s Dodge Viper blew an engine on Day 5.
That means Close now has a nine minute lead over Michael Pritchard.
“I’ve been in this position before with a day to go and that’s when you start listening for noises in your car,” Close admitted.
“It’s sad to see Jason out. Ideally it’s not what you want to see – you want to go out there and battle it out with the best.
“We had a strategy and plenty of rubber left for a battle tomorrow. Nothing would have made me happier than to be in a tight podium with Jason.
“While we can afford to cruise now, it’s sometimes easier to keep bit of speed up, otherwise you can just go off being lazy.
“You have to be so careful as it’s easy to make a mistake or pick up a puncture.”
Long-time Classic Handicap leader Peter Ullrich fell out of contention thanks to problems with his Jensen CV8. Leigh Achtenberg now leads in his Porsche, while Steve Glenney continues to hold a commanding advantage in the Four-Wheel-Drive class.
Class Standings – Day 5
Wrest Point GT2
1. Matt Close/Cameron Reeves, 2015 Porsche GT3,
2. Michael Pritchard/Gary Mourant, 2016 Dodge Viper ACR, +9m00s
3. Jim Richards/Barry Oliver, 2015 Porsche GT4, +13m56s
1. Leigh Achterberg/Greg Fitzgerald, 1982 Porsche 944
2. Paul Freestone/Christine Freestone, 1960 Aston Martin DB4, +1m30s
3. Charlie Hughes/Mary Hughes, 1982 Ford Falcon, +1m59s
Country Club GT4
1. Steve Glenney/Tim Kulhanek, 2008 Subaru STi
2. Tony Quinn/Naomi Tillett, 2014 Lamborghini Huracan, +2m04s
3. Angus Kennard/Ian Wheeler, 2015 Nissan GT-R35, +2m06s
Shannons Classic GT
1. Jon Siddins/Gina Siddins, 1970 Datsun 240Z,
2. Keith Callinan/Mary Anne Callinan, 1977 Ford RS 1800, + 5m20s
3. Mick Downey/Jarrod Van Den Akker, 1977 Holden Torana, +5m41s
Spirit of Tasmania and Duttons Garage Early Modern
1. Alan Roe/Michael Lloyd, 2000 Mitsubishi Evo 6.5RS
2. Mark Balcombe/Brian Foster, 1995 Mazda RX-7 SP, + 3m24s
3. Andrew Bollom/Lee Challoner-Miles, 1995 Mazda RX-7, +4m22s
RDA Brakes Modern
1. Brendan Winterbourn/Anthony Chudleigh, 2011 Mitsubishi Evolution X,
2. Gregory Burrowes/Rhonda Burrowes, 2009 Mitsubishi Evolution X, +3m54s
3. Peter Mayer/Nicole O’Neill, 2007 Porsche 911 GT3, +7m08s
1. Wayne Clark/Trevor Berriman, 1938 Dodge Speedster Special
2. Graham Copeland/Josh Herbert, 1936 Desoto Special, +1h36m21s
Budget GT Sports Trophy
1. Jeff Beable/Nerida Beable, 2000 Nissan Skyline GT-R N1
2. Jordan Bridge/Debbie Bridge, 2004 Subaru WRX STi, +5m25s
3. Martin Duursma/Richard Wodhams, 2013 Lotus Exige S V6, + 6m02s
Budget TSD Trophy
1. Brian Marshall/Justin Marshall, 2011 Volkswagen Polo GTI, 83pts
2. Gerard Knapp/Roger Campbell, 2005 Alfa Romeo GT, 87pts
3. Darryl Marshall/Andrew Marshall, 2002 Ford Falcon Ute Pursuit 250, 95pts
Targa Tasmania: White, Close continue tight battle
Gill focused on winning APRC title after two low-key seasons