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Grip : GRIP November 2012
SPORT GRIP DEALER TEAM CLIMBS TARGA PODIUM NEIL Bucky Motors Sales Manager, Ben Newman, and Dealer Principal, Crichton Lewis, produced the best performance of their short tarmac rallying career with a podium placing at Targa High Country at Mt Buller in early November. Driving their Subaru WRX STI in the 4WD Showroom competition, the Tasmanian pair finished third outright in the second round of the CAMS Australian Targa Championship. Newman and Lewis have been consistently finishing fourth at Targas, and when the opportunity opened on the final day to push for their first ever top three result, they drove hard on the twisting roads around Eildon and to Mt Buller. “The 4WD Showroom competition has become one of the Targa series’ most hotly contested classes, and we see it as a true competition of car against car and driver against driver,” Newman said. “The pace of the entire showroom field has increased significantly, with the first and second place- getters in the top 10 outright in the last few rounds, which is no easy task for a showroom specification car against the likes of Porsche GT3s and Nissan GT-Rs.” The pair’s increased speed is mainly due to their experience of tarmac rallying. “It’s not just time behind the wheel, but a lot of the speed has come from the quality and delivery of Crichton’s pacenotes, and being confident in the pacenotes gives me the confidence to push on hard through the blind high-speed corners, where big time can be made up,” he added. “The Subaru is a great tarmac car, and is very forgiving to drive. The All- Wheel Drive system really makes the car easy to drive at the limit, and the car has run faultlessly at five events now.” The next two Targa rounds are in Tasmania – home soil for Newman and Lewis – so they’re hoping that a little home state advantage will play into their hands. “Obviously we would love to get on the top step of the podium some time, however we are still relatively new to this sport and have completed only five motorspor t events,” Newman explained. “So while we would love to get the top step of the podium and the championship, we will probably struggle with outright pace, but you never know, we will keep it safe and consistent and see where we end up.” Newman and Lewis’ Australian Targa Championship campaign is supported by Subaru Finance and Subaru Geniune Par ts and Accessories, with Stephen Puckeridge providing help and assistance in sourcing STI parts. Their wives, Lauren and Amanda, have also been a great support, despite not being huge motorsport fans. Ben Newman and Crichton Lewis (far right) celebrate their third place in theTarga High Country in November. INSIDE GRIP HOME PAGE NEW FORESTER MARKETING AWARDS BRZ NEWS AFTERSALES GENUINE PARTS AMBASSADOR TRENDS DEALER STATS SPORT
GRIP October 2012
GRIP December 2012