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Targa West 2009 got underway yesterday with the running of the Searle Race Equipment Prologue at the Perth Motorplex in Kwinana.
Competitors completed two laps of the 3.47 kilometre course, which was run to determine the
start order for the rally, which officially kicks off tomorrow morning with the ceremonial start in Murray Street Mall at 8:45am.
Defending Modern Competition Champions Steven Jones (WA)/Ruari Soutar-Dawson (WA) set the fastest time of the record 99 car field competing in a Nissan GTR 35.
With the event running in reverse order Jones will be the last car on the road and is expected to be waved away from Murray Street Mall just after 10:00am tomorrow morning.
Fellow West Australian Dean Herridge/Chris Murphy (QLD) (Subaru Impreza WRX Sti) finished the prologue in second, with Targa Tasmanian winner Tony Quinn (QLD)/Naomi Tillet (SA), also competing in a Nissan GTR 35, just behind in third.
Run under an almost constant rain cloud the 4WD cars had a clear advantage over their 2WD counterparts, with grip a constant battle in slippery conditions.
Lea Welch (WA)/Justin Smith (WA) (Ford Escort Mk1) was the fastest of the classic vehicles followed by the husband and wife team of David and Vicki Moir (WA) (Datsun 240Z).
Showing both crew and car could match it with the modern cars in difficult conditions they were the only classic cars in the top 25.
QUIT Targa West is broken up into two categories, Competition and Challenge, which are further broken down into Modern (post-1982) and Classic (pre-1982) classes.
Competition cars are set up as competitive rally cars, each vehicle is equipped with a roll cage
and full safety features. Challenge cars are standard road cars, which run without a roll cage
and are speed restricted monitored by a GPS tracking system.
Celebrating its fifth year in 2009, QUIT Targa West will be held in the City of Perth and the surrounding shires of Kalamunda, Chittering and Toodyay.
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