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2 May 2009

Eight-time Targa winner Jim Richards became a Targa spectator for the first time after crashing out of the event on the day’s fifth stage, putting the Targa legend on the sidelines for the first time in his 16 year history in the event.

Jim Richards shocked onlookers when he hit a bank on the Paloona stage, damaging his Porsche’s radiator beyond repair and retiring from the event for the first time.

"We hit a bank on a little second gear corner and broke the radiator,” Richards explained. “The radiator's right at the front of the Porsche, so unfortunately we just rolled down the road and parked it an SOS point and waited for the truck to arrive to pick it up.

"These things happen, and they happen to other drivers. It's just a consequence of going in a rally; every now and then you make a little blue and hit something, I suppose."

"I turned into the corner in second gear, got to the middle of the corner and the car understeered off on all the gravel and mud that was on the road. But hey, 200 other cars got around the corner without hitting the bank, so I was obviously going a fraction too fast,” a philosophical Richards added.

"There's no excuses. The fact is that we hit the bank and no-one else did."

Richards and navigator Barry Oliver's 2008 Porsche GT2 started the day just one second off the lead.

For more information visit http://www.targatasmania.com.au/

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