NEW TARGA TASMANIA NIGHT STAGE A FIRST FOR AUSTRALIAN TARMAC RALLYING

For the first time in the history of Australian tarmac rallying, the international tarmac classic Targa Tasmania has introduced a special night stage to the 2007 event which will start from the gates of the Royal Tasmanian Botanical Gardens in Hobart.

Running up the hill past Government House and finishing at the Hobart Athletics Centre, the new 1.4 kilometre Botanical Gardens Targa Stage is one of the many exciting changes that Event Director Mark Perry has instigated for next year's staging of the tarmac event from April 17 - 22.

Specifically designed to accommodate spectator grandstands, food vendors and commercial retail providers, this latest addition to the Targa Tasmania 2007 course will be the final stage held on the event's second competitive leg on Thursday April 19.

Commencing at 6.00pm, large flood lights will light the way for an expected field of 250-plus Targa Tasmania vehicles as they make their way up the winding climb of the closed-road stage, which was once the site of Hobart's Historic Hillclimb back in the 1940s and 50s.

Perry says the introduction of the Botanical Gardens stage is representative of the new direction Targa Tasmania is taking in bringing the event back to the Tasmanian community.

"Due to its achievable base time [minimum completion time for the leg], this will be a very spectator friendly stage," explains Perry. "The challenging uphill climb and an impressive on-site lighting system will ensure the vehicles will be more visible than ever before."

"Competitors will be able to entertain the crowd with the spirited competition Targa Tasmania is renowned for, in a never seen before arena."

To date 203 applications have been received for the 16th annual Targa Tasmania.

-credit: www.targatasmania.com.au