New format for this year’s Make Smoking History Targa West  

Simon Gunson putting on a show for the crowd in the City of Perth in his 1971 Ford Capri Perana. Photo: Gemma Lucas
  • Short rallysprint format
  • World EV Day city display
  • Street racing in Ellenbrook and Malaga
  • New Celebration of Street Machines and Hot Rods display

This year sees a new format for Western Australia’s premier tarmac rally, Make Smoking History Targa West, held in Perth with various short sprint events and car displays from 9thto 18th September.
On World EV Day, Friday 9th September, there’ll be electric vehicles on display alongside Targa West rally cars, street machines and hot rods from 10am to 8pm in Forrest Place that’ll spill into Murray Street in the City of Perth.
The popular street race, Midland Toyota Targa Ellenbrook Sprint, returns on Saturday 10th September with an improved course extended to 2.3 kilometres with each driver racing the clock four times. Last year, more than 6,000 fans lined the streets of Ellenbrook as man and machine roared excitement into the northern Perth suburb. 
The City of Perth Celebration of Motorsport and the Shannons Classics on the Swan are set to be bigger than ever with all manner of motorsport and motor vehicles on display at Langley Park and on Riverside Drive on Sunday 11th September
New this year is the Celebration of Street Machines and Hot Rods with over 100 mean-looking immaculate machines joining the display on Langley Park. In total, there’s over 500 vehicles expected on Langley Park and along the river, and entry is free.
There will be plenty of activities for the whole family including BMX high flying display, the Viper Wheelie motorbikes rides, remote control cars, hill trolley rides, scenic helicopter flights and food trucks. 
On Sunday 11th September, there’s exciting racing action with the Engine Shop Targa City Sprint in the morning and The City of Perth Targa Rallysprint, the last round for the coveted Targa Cup, in the afternoon. 
The 2.1-kilometre City of Perth course will see 80 rally drivers fanging around corners and going flat out along the straight Riverside Drive to get the fastest time. They’ll need to watch the kerbs which can be tyre killers. 

One week later on Sunday 18th September, the Make Smoking History Targa Malaga Rallysprint will see 70 drivers race along the 6-kilometre course. The fast Malaga course has always been a driver and spectator favourite. 
The changes to Targa West this year come as a result of Motorsport Australia’s Targa Review Panel investigation into the incidents at Targa Tasmania earlier this year and the subsequent decision from the governing body to suspend permits for all Targa style rally events this year. 
Targa West organisers take competitor and spectator safety very seriously. There has not been a serious or fatal incident at Targa West for the past 16 years.
Event Director Ross Tapper said that he’s happy that sponsors have recognised the high standards imposed on all Targa West events and have continued with their support.
“It’s no secret, these are challenge times and it has nothing to do with Covid,” said Tapper.
“We’ve adapted to run an event for drivers and motoring enthusiasts this year in short rallysprint formats rather than the endurance of a traditional tarmac rally.
“We’re putting more emphasis on the off-track entertainment with the Celebration of Motorsport, Classics on the Swan and the new Hot Rod and Street Machine displays – something for every car lover.” 
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