Richards retains lead at Targa, leg 4

Targa Tasmania Tarmac Rally -- Sunday, April 22 Burnie to Hobart: stages Touring car greats Jim Richards and Peter Brock had contrasting results in today's shortened fourth leg of the 10th anniversary Targa Tasmania tarmac rally. Richards, a...

Targa Tasmania Tarmac Rally -- Sunday, April 22 Burnie to Hobart: stages

Touring car greats Jim Richards and Peter Brock had contrasting results in today's shortened fourth leg of the 10th anniversary Targa Tasmania tarmac rally.

Richards, a six-times Bathurst 1000 winner, and Tasmanian navigator Barry Oliver retained the lead in their turbo Porsche 911, despite incurring a 2-min penalty for fitting two new tyres. With two days remaining in the event they have a total penalty time of 7-mins 45-secs and lead by 54-secs ahead of Queensland's Tony Quinn in another Porsche 911. Richards and Oliver have four previous Targa wins.

Brock effectively dropped out of contention because of a power steering pump failure in the V8 Holden Ute he is sharing with navigator and son James. The Brocks struck trouble after the Rosebery stage of today's leg, which covered mostly West Coast areas, and were forced to slow. They failed to complete the leg and received more than 150-mins in penalties.

The leg was scheduled to comprise nine legs, but was shortened after the cancellation of the Ellendale stage. This followed a crash which left 40-year-old Sydney driver Bill Pye trapped in his Lotus Elise. Clerk of Course Tom Snooks said the stage was cancelled because of the time it took to free Pye from his vehicle. Pye was taken to Royal Hobart Hospital suffering minor neck and back injuries.

Richards said today's leg had been the most physically demanding of the rally since it began last Wednesday.

"We had another good run, but I'm reasonably tired," said Richards. "It was a hard day with some of the fastest sections of roads. Tomorrow will be more relaxing, with some short, sharp stages. The most important day will be the last day."

Brock said he had attempted to source a replacement power steering pump for his Holden immediately his problems surfaced, but has been unsuccessful. However, he said a new unit would be fitted in the vehicle for tomorrow's 10 stages around Hobart.

"We asked some of the locals, but we couldn't find the parts we needed," said Brock. "It was frustrating because making the switch is a relatively simple job. We tried to drive the rest of the stages, but we had to stop. The (power steering) pump seized. The shaft that drives it snapped in half and the pulley fell off."

Victorian Mark Tierney witnessed the accident involving Pye's Lotus. Tierney was navigating in the Ford Mustang that went off the road moments before Pye's car.

"We went off backwards into a fence before the Elise came along," said Tierney. "They seemed to lose it along the top in the fast approach to a right-hand corner and rolled along the fence."

Tasmania's John White, who had been third before today's leg, dropped out of contention after his Nissan struck a guide post on the Queenstown stage, damaging a rear wheel and lower control arm. <pre> OVERALL CLASSIFICATION (after Leg 4):

MODERN COMPETITION

(Outright): POS DRIVERS CAR PENALTY TIME 1. J. Richards (Vic)-B. Oliver (Tas) Porsche 911 7-min 45-secs 2. T. Quinn (Qld)-K. Wenn (Tas) Porsche 911 8-min 39-secs 3. C. Dean-G. Bell (Vic) Toyota Supra 11-min 06-secs 4. N. Bates-C. Taylor (A.C.T.) Lexus IS200 12-min 01-secs 5. R. Lintott (NSW)-T. Jackson (Tas) Porsche 911 12-min 13-secs 6. B. Learoyd-C. Palmer (Qld) Chevrolet Corvette 12-min 24-secs 7. M. Warwick-G. Warwick (Vic) Porsche 911 12-min 34-secs 8. J. Beable-N. Beable (Vic) Nissan Skyline 13-min 43-secs 9. M. Cummings-C. Alp (Vic) Porsche 993 14-min 09-secs 10. G. Cook-T. Robertson (Tas) Porsche 911 15-min 02-secs

OTHERS: 20. M. Coote-A. McLoughlan (Qld) Mazda MX-5 20-min 00-secs 26. S. Hoinville-G. Foletta (Vic) Ford Falcon XR6 22-min 00-secs 42. B. Sheene (Qld)-F. White (Tas) Mercedes-Benz ML 55 33-min 26-secs

CLASSIC COMPETITION: POS DRIVERS CAR PENALTY TIME 1. R. Broadbent-M. Goedheer (Vic) Porsche 911 5-min 25-secs

TOURING CLASSIC COMPETITION: POS DRIVERS CAR PENALTY TIME 1. P. Nichols-P. Blake (Tas) Austin Healey 20-min 09-secs

HISTORIC COMPETITION: POS DRIVERS CAR PENALTY TIME 1. N. Cocks (SA)-S. Fong (NSW) Bugatti 35B 12-min 09-secs

-www.targa.org

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About this article
Series Other rally
Drivers Jim Richards , Peter Brock , Tony Quinn , Bill Pye