While Keith and Janel Tanner took Friday to hash out setting the odometer on the Targa Miata, Brandon Fitch and I continued on with our education with the Open Road Motorsports Targa School in our trusty Supercharged NC. The day's instruction orbited around two simulated stages on Bell Island just a short ferry ride from St. John's. With our notes prepped, our own Terratrip rally computer properly calibrated, and a closed course through the winding roads of the island ahead of us, we were understandably enthusiastic about putting our freshly-gleaned skills to use.
We arrived early, took the first spot in the queue just ahead of a vicious-sounding Ferrari Enzo and waited for the stage lights to go green. When the time came, Fitch dropped the hammer and I immediately began rattling off instructions.
Continue reading to see how it went...
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"Ok, 130 meters square right into 40 meters square left."
With Fitch positioning the vehicle appropriately on the track, I glanced up toward the Terratrip only to realize that the accumulated distance digits had barely crested 30 meters. Fitch was waiting for the next instruction and I had no idea how close or far we were from the bend. Grand Junction, we have a problem.
We ran the rest of the day without the computer, which left me to simply call out the next instruction with no real concept of distance. Basically, I wasn't much help. Near as we can figure, the first hard launch away from the stage repositioned the Terratrip probe to the point that it was no longer producing an accurate reading.
Our attempts get the probe closer to its original position haven't exactly been fruitful as of yet. Unless we can figure out a solution, we may be forced to rely on a slightly less accurate form of navigation to count down our distances: a Garmin GPS.
In the meantime, we crossed paths with a few more competitors, including SRT honcho Ralph Gilles in his Dodge Viper and the MotoMan crew in their 2011 Challenger 392 SRT8. Check the gallery for a look at some of the metal on hand and stay tuned for more updates.