Whaleoil Race Team gearing up

Finish line at Havelock North.

Well, it’s been a busy week for me gearing up for Targa.

I have been carrying out the route book checking all over the lower South Island since Monday and we covered about 2500kms over four days, all the while checking distances, ensuring instructions were accurate, re-writing routes where necessary etc.

It is quite unbelievable how much work behind the scenes goes into planning a big event like Targa.

Targa can’t operate without volunteers, there are around 1500 volunteers involved in various aspects throughout the week and the months leading up to it. And it really is a pretty big deal for the towns we stay in. Targa will bring over one million dollars in spend to the towns we travel through and stay at for each day of the event.

This year we are looking at having in excess of 150 vehicles of all descriptions competing in the three different categories, being the Vintage Car Club rally, the Targa Tour where HR and I will be one of the midpoint officials, and the Targa race proper.

The amazing array of different vehicles is really something to behold. The oldest car in the event, running in the VCC rally, is a 1929 Rolls Royce Phantom! There are plenty of other cool cars such as a 1956 Jag XK140, a couple of E Types, MG’s, Escorts etc and even an Austin 1100!

This field will head off first, about an hour before the race competitors, with the Tour participants in the middle.

Within the Tour, you will see some of the coolest cars around. This is where you get to thrash your supercar? like this Lambo Gallardo,

Where else could you thrash one of these in NZ?

Or pretty much anything else you might like to bring along.

Sometimes you have to turn left to go right! Photo credit: Proshots.

But to highlight the difference between the gazillionaires and the paupers, here are a couple of sweet videos that show both ends of the spectrum. The first relates to a couple from Canada who have competed in many Targa events around the world. They wanted to make a statement and brought a film crew with them to record their antics.

The video below is the actual full run over the Crown Range which runs from Arrowtown to Cardrona. They even hired a helicopter to chase them on their record-breaking run. Targa events are not run to pace notes, just a route book that has directions cautions etc in it. Everytime the co-driver in this video is saying ‘hold’, it means that they are sitting on 200km/h, the maximum allowed under the motorsport regs for this type of event!

Then you have guys operating on a budget. These roosters are definitely doing it for fun, and are pretty funny guys. This video is well worth a watch as they chat about their awesome sponsors!

So don’t forget, there is still time to take part if you wish. It looks like we have at least one Oiler joining up this week bringing a 996 Porsche into the tour with us so if you think it might be a thing for you, or even if you feel like helping out as a volunteer to be part of the fun, please feel free to flick me an email at [email protected] and we’ll get you sorted.


Many thanks to Technomage for his efforts on our cool new logo.