Tarmac rally testing for top Nissan GT-R teams at historic Baskerville Raceway

Top Nissan GT-R teams have made final preparations at Pepsi Max Baskerville Raceway for next week’s twenty fifth anniversary Targa Tasmania tarmac rally.

Competition contenders David Ayers of Just Jap Racing and Angus Kennard of the Kennards Hire team, have put their road registered supercars through their paces around Hobart’s historic 2.1 kilometre race track.

Having successfully finished fifth outright at Targa 2015, Hobart driver, David Ayers, is again teaming up with co-driver and former Targa Tasmania event director, Stuart Benson, for the 2016 event. The Sydney based two car Just Jap Racing team have adapted the Ayers/Benson R35 model Nissan GT-R to the new showroom focused GT4 competition, while Just Jap director and also driver, Steve Thatcher, and co-driver, Kelly Handley, will again focus on the Early Modern competition in their familiar R32 model Nissan GT-R.

Just Jap Racing co-driver, Stuart Benson said “preparation is everything when it comes to doing well at an endurance event like next week’s six-day rally, and being such a technical track, Baskerville really is the perfect location for performance testing.”

Targa hall of fame competitor and veteran of  18 Targa Tasmania events, Ayers said that the “New technical regulations introduced for 2016 allow very limited performance modifications compared to last year.”

“Fewer modifications have resulted in reduced power and torque levels for our car, so today we are focused on improving the GT-R’s handling, with Supashock suspension and Nismo Dunlop tyres”.

Australian developed Supashock dampers have been fitted to the R35 model Just Jap Racing GT-R, a key suspension component with revolutionary design that V8 Supercars teams, including Prodrive Racing Australia, have credited to their recent circuit racing success.

2015 Targa Showroom 4WD winner and Sydney-sider, Angus Kennard, has swapped his Subaru WRX STI for a new Nissan GT-R and is again paring up with Hobart accountant, Ian Wheeler as co-driver. Hopeful of repeating previous podium success, renowned Launceston motorsport operation, Les Walkden Rallying have prepared Kennard’s Nissan and utilised tarmac rally expert Steve Glenney to assist in vehicle set up.

Competition gets under way in the Tamar Valley on Monday 11 April and finishes in Hobart on Saturday 16 April.


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