Former Bathurst winner Tony Longhurst, driving the Les Walkden Rallying-prepared Subaru Impreza WRX STI, is in fifth place at Targa West with one day remaining, but will attack the final day in the hope of moving into the top three.
After 21 special stages, Steven Jones leads the way in his Nissan Skyline GTR, while another Bathurst winner, Jim Richards is in second place in his Porsche 911 GT2, just 11 seconds behind. Kevin Weeks, driving a Lamborghini Superleggera, is in third place, 30 seconds off the pace.
Longhurst, and fourth-placed Troy Wilson, have been engaged in a race of their own. The two four-wheel drive cars have been unable to match the outright pace of the top three, but just 15 seconds separate the pair.
Wilson, driving a Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 7, was seven seconds faster on the opening day and took another seven from Longhurst today.
Both drivers are hoping for some rain on the final day to bring the top three cars back to the rest of the field.
But the forecast is for the fine weather to continue, and with just 81 competitive kilometres remaining, Longhurst knows he will need some luck if he is to finish on the podium.
“The top three cars are in a league of their own in the dry, but we’ve had a huge battle with Troy across two days now and we’ve looking forward to continuing that tomorrow and maybe getting ahead of him,” Longhurst said.
“It would take one of the top cars to break for us to move into that group. But we’ll push on as fast as we can and see what happens.
“This is the toughest tarmac rally I’ve done so far. It is a really good event, great fun, and being involved in a close dual makes it all the better.”
Results – Targa West (after day 2 – 21 special stages)
1, Steven Jones, Nissan Skyline GTR, 1:04:15.0, 0
2, Jim Richards, Porsche 911 GT2, 1:04:26.0, +11.0
3, Kevin Weeks, Lamborghini Superleggera, 1:04:45.0, +30.0
4, Tony Longhurst, Subaru Impreza WRX STI, 1:05:49.0, +1:34.0
5, Troy Wilson, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 7, 1:06:04.0, +1:49.0
6, Tony Quinn, Porsche 911 GT3, 1:06:17.0, +2:02.0
7, Dylan Thomas, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 RS, 1:07:50.0, +3:35.0
8, Peter Major, Mitsubishi Lancer Evo 9 RS, 1:07:53.0, +3:38.0
9, Graham Furness, Subaru Impreza WRX Spec C, 1:08:30.0, +4:15.0
10, Rob Herridge, Subaru Impreza WRX STI, 1:08:31.0, +4:16.0
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