Gill leads Targa Bambina (Day 1)

| Photographer Credit: Steve Ritchie

The first day of the 2024 Targa Bambina used some of the exhilarating roads that the Waikato region has to offer, all based around the township of Te Kauwhata. There were a modest number of 16 competition cars to start the day which would encompass 114 km’s over 8 special stages.

Each road was run twice over. The overnight rain made for damp first stage which was Coalfields however the summer heat quickly dried the roads for the remaining stages.

Nigel Patterson is now the sole contender in Classic 3402 over

The battle for the top position was between Jason Gill in the VW Polo and Dave Rogers in the Mitsubishi Lancer Evo. Gill and his co-driver Brianna Little took six wins while Rogers and co-driver Shane Reynolds had two stage wins. The former pairing finished the day with a 6.3 second lead. Rounding out the top three was Mike Tubbs and his co-driver Matt Bailey in a BMW M2 Coupe.

The Classic 3401cc and over class is being led by Nigel Patterson and co-driver Meighan Allan in a BMW 335i as their main rival, the Butler’s Holden Cheetah encountered an issue with the carburetor while they were touring to Stage 1. This was the same problem which plagued them just weeks earlier in the Targa Sprint.

Andrew Oakley leads the Production 4WD

Andrew Oakley and co-driver Steve Hutchins have a commanding lead in the Production 4WD class with 1 minute 8 seconds over Nicolaas De Waal and co-driver Natasha Johns in De Waal’s newly acquired Toyota Yaris.

Brian Green and Fleur Pedersen once again encountered mechanical gremlins in the Mitsubishi Lancer but were able to fix these to rejoin, while the only other full retirement was Ivan Knauf’s Subaru STi.

The Tour cars

Tomorrow’s schedule will see the cars running on two of the roads south of Te Kauwhata and another two roads to the west of the township and run twice over, on what is set to be a thrilling last day of action.

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