Competitors in the 18th running of Targa New Zealand will relish the opportunity to again experience the delights of roads around Hawke’s Bay in October.
The 2011 Targa New Zealand finished in Havelock North and the drivers in this year’s event will again be presented with a wide array of interesting local roads during the final two days of the event.
There is a nice little twist this year, with the final two days becoming known as "Targa Hawke’s Bay". The drivers begin Friday morning’s special stages in Palmerston North on October 26th and travel to Hawke’s Bay via Taihape, finishing in the Havelock North domain. On Saturday the drivers will be away early from the domain to contest eight special stages around the district with service breaks during the day in Waipukurau, at Danniverke High School and at the old Mitre Ten site in St Aubyn Street.
Hastings Mayor Lawrence Yule says "We are delighted that the Targa New Zealand drivers, crew and supporters will again spend time in Hawke’s Bay. The competitors praise our roads as being amongst the best that are used for special stages during this prestigious event."
Mr Yule says "This event gives Hastings a chance to showcase our attractions to a large group of potential visitors. Retailers and accommodation providers will also benefit from having the crews stay in the area for two nights."
Targa event director Peter Martin says "I am pleased that we are able to bring the event to Hawke’s Bay again this year. The response we received from locals during last year’s event was staggering, with thousands of people turning out to watch the cars race through the closed roads of the special stages. Hastings District Council has again been very supportive of our bid to bring the event back to the district and has made us feel very welcome."
The 2012 Targa New Zealand starts in Auckland on Tuesday October 23rd and has again attracted a wide range of machinery, from exotic European cars, through to vintage sports cars and state-of-the-art, 4WD rally cars.
A ceremonial finish in the centre of Havelock North on Saturday 27th October will be welcomed by the crews after five full on days of rallying and there will be the opportunity to mix with the locals during an evening of celebration in the village centre.
A breakfast and the official prize giving will be held in the Hawke’s Bay Opera House in Hastings on Sunday morning, October 28th.
Targa New Zealand first used roads around Hawke’s Bay in 2004 and then yearly until 2007 when it took a break from this region until returning last year.
The charity of choice for the 2012 New Zealand Targa is again Cure Kids. Since the relationship began with the organisation in 2002, over $500,000 has been raised to help children with life threatening illnesses and their families.
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