Actor Eric Bana has crashed out of Targa Tasmania after his 1974 Ford Coupe left the road and hit two trees on the challenging Cethana stage just after lunchtime today.

Bana and his close friend and navigator Tony Ramunno, who had been running in 53rd place outright in the Shannons Classic Competition out of 115 starters, were unhurt.

However, Bana’s previously immaculate Falcon coupe, which he has owned since he was 15 and was recently the subject of hundreds of hours of a total restoration to V8 Supercar standards, was battered and bruised.

Initially it had been hoped that the car could be repaired to continue the final day of Targa tomorrow from Burnie to Hobart, however a closer inspection by his support crew revealed that the front right hand steering and suspension were too badly damaged for a safe repair in time.

The accident occurred 25.7km into the 37.7km Cethana stage south west of Sheffield in Tasmania’s North West as Bana was travelling downhill through a series of right bends.

“We had been having a great day until then,” Bana said.
“We were still being cautious but we had found a fairly comfortable rhythm and were really starting to enjoy ourselves as we got used to the car.”

“But I misjudged a tight left hander and we went in a little too fast – the car understeered off the road and got onto the gravel and we went into a couple of trees at a fairly low speed.

“The car is a little battered on the driver’s side which is a real shame, as many hours had been spent re-shaping its original panels to get it just right.”

“However the real problem is that wed damaged the front right hand steering and suspension and the steering is broken.”

“It’s a real shame, but that’s motor racing.”

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