Tue, 09/11/2010

Subaru rally driver Dean Herridge has finished fourth in the inaugural running of Targa High Country, held in Victoria's north east from November 5 to 7, the opening round of the Australian Targa Championship.

Driving his Subaru WRX STI, Herridge and co-driver Glen Weston were part of a 210 car field that contested Victoria's first ever multi-stage tarmac rally.

The event got underway with a street stage in Mansfield on Friday night, before Leg 1 took competitors from Mt Buller to Wangaratta and back. After eight fast stages, Herridge and the Subaru were fourth, and well within striking distance of the leaders.

"We were really pleased with our performance during Saturday. The stages suited the outright power of the Supercars. All the guys ahead of us were in cars with much larger engines," Herridge said.

Herridge had hoped to be able to push for victory on the eight stages of day two, but it wasn't to be.

"Sunday's stages were twistier, and we expected to be a lot more competitive. Unfortunately some brake problems from the first day re-appeared and for three stages we had virtually no brakes.

"That meant we had to slow down to make it back to service. But once we got on top of that we managed to peg back a fair bit of time to Jimmy (Richards) in his Porsche."

By the time the event reached its conclusion on Mt Buller, Herridge and Weston had moved to within 20 seconds of Richards' Porsche, giving the Western Australian driver a good points haul in the first round of the Australian Targa Championship.

First and second places in Targa High Country were taken by the Lamborghini Gallardos of Kevin Weeks and Jason White.

The next of the championship is the Hobart-based Targa Wrest Point on January 29 and 30, 2011.

Targa High Country - Final Results (Provisional)

  1. Kevin Weeks, Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera, 11:35
  2. Jason White, Lamborghini Gallardo Superleggera, +0:20s
  3. Jim Richards, Porsche 911 GT3 RS, +1m21s
  4. Dean Herridge, Subaru Impreza WRX STi, +1m41s
  5. Matt Close, Audi TTRS, +3m02s