On September 11, 2011 the tenth running of Targa Newfoundland will take place. Once again I will be navigating for Rick MacLeod. However this year we will be competing in the Grand Touring Class instead of competing with a high-horsepower Mustang in the Targa Class, as we have many times before. This year Rick and I will be his 2008 Porsche Cayenne.
The Porsche Cayenne Ready For Targa Newfoundland
It was quite a struggle to get the rally odometer installed using the Porsche speedometer wiring. Apparently this was not as straightforward as initially expected, but it is now in a reportedly working fine.
The other very important vehicle preparation issue was to deactivate the passenger side air bag. In my opinion, as a navigator, this is the most important safety issue in rallying. The thought of having rally odometers, clocks, pencils, pens, highlighters, route books, and calculators being driven against your face and body by an exploding air bag is very frightening. All of this can happen at low impacts. Of course, this is not an issue with race vehicles or older rally vehicles, but when modern cars are used in rallying a low impact accident is the accident with the highest probability of occurring. To me this is far more important safety issue in a rally than wearing a firesuit or a helmet. Safety in a rally is different than safety in a race and different from safety in normal driving.
The Porsche Cayenne should be a good choice for this event as it has adequate power and the 4-wheel drive should come in handy if we have to deal with the remnants of Katia. The other cars in our class are formidable – VW, Miata, Lamborghini, Ferrari, MINI, Maserati, Subaru, another Porsche, BMW, and Dodge Challenger; however I think that we will be competitive.
Targa Newfoundland will cover about 2,000 kilometres over five competitive days. There will be about 35 – 40 timed stages covering about 450 kilometres. The event will move around Newfoundland and each night a car show will be held in each place where the rally overnights. These car shows are great because the competitors get to meet the wonderful people of Newfoundland. As a result, there is a substantial endurance aspect to this event as well. As I have noted, I have competed in this event many times before and I would recommend that every car enthusiast have it on their bucket list.