Steven Richards prepares for Targa Tasmania

Richards To Start Pace-Notes Lessons For Targa WEDNESDAY, MARCH 6: Dual Bathurst V8 Supercar champion Steven Richards tomorrow begins his crash-course in pace-noting lessons in preparation for his debut in the Targa Tasmania tarmac rally next ...

Richards To Start Pace-Notes Lessons For Targa

WEDNESDAY, MARCH 6: Dual Bathurst V8 Supercar champion Steven Richards tomorrow begins his crash-course in pace-noting lessons in preparation for his debut in the Targa Tasmania tarmac rally next month driving a factory-backed Holden Monaro.

The 29-year-old Victorian said he would have his first practical pace-noting instructions in a drive over stages of the Rally of Melbourne course with Jenny Cole, his navigator for the 1,968km Targa event from April 16-21.

"Jenny has some pace notes from the Rally of Melbourne so we're going for a drive tomorrow to see how I handle things," said Richards.

"Understanding pace notes is all new to me, so I need to get familiar with having someone giving me instructions from the passenger seat."

Richards, who is driving a Castrol Perkins Holden Commodore in this year's V8 Supercar championship, said he and Cole would conduct a reconnaissance assessment of the 43-stage Targa course in Tasmania from March 22-24.

He said the reconnaissance driving would be done in a road-going Monaro, and not the modified CV8 Holden Motorsport model he will race in Targa's Modern Competition as part of a two-car team alongside nine-times Bathurst champion Peter Brock and son James Brock.

"This trip to Tasmania is going to be very important for my preparation because it will give me a chance to get a feel for the roads, and also some more experience with pace notes," said Richards.

"Jenny has been in Targa a couple of times before and knows how it all works, so that's a big plus for me."

Richards said he had not yet driven the Targa-specification Monaro, but said he had been impressed with the capabilities of the V8 road-going model.

"I've driven a production Monaro and it felt good, so I'm looking forward to having a go in the car we will be racing in Targa," said Richards.

Modifications to the two Holden Motorsport Monaros for Targa include installing roll cages, Headers exhaust, fine-tuning engine calibration, newly-designed Harrop brakes, Momo seats, revised suspension, and they will be fitted with Bridgestone Potenza RE540S tyres.

German manufacturer Porsche has confirmed that a 1959 model 718 RS60 Spyder from their museum in Stuttgart will be entered in Targa. The car will be driven by German Klaus Bischof.

The Porsche is one of eight vehicles from overseas among the 270 entries. Others are German Matthias Baumann (1965 Ford Mustang), and Japanese contingent Shuji Kawasaki (1965 Toyota S800), Ryohei Hibino (1983 Nissan 240 RS), Kazumi Mikami (1986 Toyota Sprinter Tureno), Masanobu Ando (1987 Honda CRX), Eiyuki Endo (1982 Porsche 911 RS Cup), Hiroyuki Fujiwara (2001 Mitsubishi Evo VII).

The oldest car entered is a 1925 Vauxhall 30-98, to be raced in the Shannons Historic Competition by Victorian Michael Hipkins.

Defending champion Jim Richards and five-times Targa winner Jim Richards is entered in a Porsche 911 turbo with Tasmanian navigator Barry Oliver. Port MacQuarie's Andrew Miedecke, Targa champion in 1994, will race a Dodge Viper for the second successive year.

Targa Tasmania is owned and produced by global sports marketing company Octagon Worldwide, the sports marketing and entertainment division of the Interpublic Group, one of the world's largest advertising and marketing communications groups.

-www.targa.org.au-

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Series Other rally
Drivers Jim Richards , Peter Brock , James Brock , Klaus Bischof , Andrew Miedecke , Steven Richards