February 9, 2005

45 early birds register for Targa Newfoundland 2005

St. John’s, Newfoundland – The fourth annual edition of Targa Newfoundland may still be nearly eight months away, but the first competitors have rushed to put their entries in for the 2005 event in September, including a host of classic car owners determined to drive their rare cars “the way they were intended to be driven.”

The ‘Super Early Bird’ offer for competitors in the annual tarmac rally closed January 31, 2005, with more than 45 names on the entry list. At least half of the entries are for pre-1980 cars that motorsport fans will remember as important cars in the history of the sport.

Alexander Roethe’s gorgeous 1955 Mercedes-Benz 300 SL coupe is a case in point.
The breathtaking red coupe is still considered to be the pinnacle of the sporting cars of the 1950s, with its long hood/short rear deck silhouette, gull-wing doors and powerful 6-cylinder engine. Roethe, of Vancouver, has entered the car in the Grand Touring category.

Stephen Dudley’s 1978 Ferrari 308 is certain to quicken the pulse of the marque’s devoted fans as well as motorsport followers of all stripes. It will also be the first Targa event for Dudley, of Wisconsin. The race-prepared 308 will compete in the Modern division of Targa.

A breathtaking 1939 BMW coupe, a 1964 Mercury Comet, a 1966 Chevrolet Corvette and a 1968 Alfa Romeo Spyder will join the list of first-time entries. Returning entries include Jerry Churchill’s thundering 1963 Chevrolet Impala from Michigan, the 1951 Studebaker Starlight Coupe driven by Tom Hayes of Ireland, and the crowd-pleasing (and rapid) 1967 Acadian Canso Sport piloted by Jud Buchanan of Ontario.

Vintage Datsuns, Volvos and Porsches help fill the entry list.

“We’ve always wanted a broad representation of cars from across the eras, the cars that people know and love from the past and the new cars that fans adore today,” explains Targa organizer Bob Giannou. “The word is getting out that Targa is a place that celebrates the great sporting cars of all ages. We’ve had gorgeous old Jaguars and ground-shaking new Corvettes, fine old Porsches and dramatic new Porsches, fabulous Minis of the past and present – it’s something for everybody!”

A discounted ‘Early Bird’ entry fee is available to competitors until March 31, 2005.

The fourth annual Targa Newfoundland covers 2,100 kilometres of the challenging, twisty roads of the central and eastern portion of the island of Newfoundland over six days, including more than 500 kilometres of closed-road, flat-out Targa Stages. Competitors have come from the U.S., Australia, New Zealand, Holland, the Bahamas and the U.K. for the first three editions of Targa Newfoundland, the Ultimate North American Motorsport Adventure. The rally starts in the capital city of St. John’s with registration and technical inspection on Saturday, September 10 and finishes back in St. John’s a week later.

Targa Newfoundland is owned and organized by Newfoundland International Motorsports and is sanctioned by the Canadian Association of Rallysport (CARS) and ASN Canada FIA.

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