Long-serving motorsport administrators John Large and Ronda Matthews have been inducted into the newly-created Targa Tasmania Hall of Fame. Large, currently a Vice President of the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), was a founder...
Long-serving motorsport administrators John Large and Ronda Matthews have been inducted into the newly-created Targa Tasmania Hall of Fame.
Large, currently a Vice President of the Federation Internationale de l'Automobile (FIA), was a founder of the Targa tarmac rally which began in 1992 and Matthews is a former Events Manager.
The New South Wales-based pair, who are married, were announced as the inaugural recipients of the Hall of Fame honours at a dinner in Hobart after this year's 10th anniversary Targa. The function was attended by the Premier of Tasmania, Jim Bacon, who made the presentations.
Targa Tasmania General Manager Rob McGuire said Large and Matthews were deserving of the honour because of their contribution to the growth of the event, which now annually attracts almost 300 entries and manufacturer teams.
"We decided to set up a Hall of Fame to acknowledge the efforts of those who have made Targa the fantastic event it is today, and it is entirely appropriate that John Large and Ronda Matthews have been chosen for this honour," said McGuire.
"John is known as the 'architect' of Targa for his efforts in getting Targa up and running in the early years and laying the groundwork for the future, and Rhonda worked tirelessly for the rally over many years."
Large has been involved as an official or administrator with the Confederation of Australian Motorsport (CAMS) since 1972. He was made a Vice-President in 1979, and served as President for a record term of 12 years.
His concept for a tarmac rally in Tasmania was based on ideas from the Targa Florio in Italy, and he had a significant role in uniting public, Government, media, and sponsorship support for the event.
Matthews' involvement in motorsport began as a lap-scorer and timekeeper at Sydney's Oran Park circuit in 1971, and she then worked as race secretary for former driving legend Allan Moffat for 12 years.
In 1978 Matthews organised a promotion which brought Formula One world champion the late James Hunt to Australia to drive in the Rose City 10,000 at Winton. In the mid-1980s she was Functions Manager for the Australian Safari, and later became Events Manager for the Targa rally.