Lotus Exige wins Targa High Country 2017


Lotus sports cars dominate the podiums


Simply Sports Cars took nearly thirty Lotus sports cars to Targa High Country in 2017, our biggest group ever. We had people in the exclusive Lotus Tour, TSD, GT Sports Trophy & GT2 classes with a mix of old and new cars from Lotus Elise S1's to new Evora 400's and even the only Lotus Exige Cup 380 in Australia competing in TSD. Lotus sports cars claimed most of the podium positions with equal 1st in GT Sports Trophy & 2nd and 3rd in TSD.


Our crew provided road side support over the 3 days across the various stages, vehicle checks at the beginning and end of each day as well as general support.


The amazing result was delivered after hundreds of km's of driving over 3 days & nothing could split the two Lotus Exige V6 drivers once they reached the finish line, even more surprising considering the 26s gap coming into the final stage. It couldn't have been scripted any better with Martin, Richard, Mark & Scott sharing the top step of the podium. GT Sports Trophy is limited to a top speed of 130km/h but so competitive were their times both Exige sports cars placed in the top 30 overall too. The pair also finished over 12 minutes ahead of their nearest rivals in the class, further demonstrating the performance of the Exige.


In TSD it was also super close right up until the final stages with Mike and Ric coming in 2nd place with the forever smiling father & daughter combo of Brian and Stevie-Lee placing 3rd. Justin used Targa High Country as his return to competitive motorsport in the open GT2 class and by the end of the 3 days scored a top 10 finish in 7th place.


Lee Knappett, Director of Simply Sports Cars said "I'm really proud to see our group here on Mount Buller, we started with a couple of cars a few years ago and this year we had nearly 70 people in our group & close to 30 cars participating, they become more like family each time. They have all been able to enjoy some of the most amazing roads, closed to the public, in various classes with cars new and old and as you can see in the photos all you see are lots of similing faces. This is the type of lifestyle we like to foster - you buy a sports car from us to use it, to enjoy it and to be amongst other like minded people whether its for social fun, casual competition or motorsport"



Richard Gibbs, Director of Sales & Strategy for Simply Sports Cars said "How would anyone have imagined two cars finishing with practically identical times. To see people get so much enjoyment from being able to experience events like this is what we strive for whether you drive an Elise, Exige or Evora. To put it in perspective Mark simply removed the event stickers then drove home which is testament to the way Lotus builds and designs sports cars, they are made to be used. We couldn't thank Targa Australia enough for their help and assistance in creating such a great driving experience"



"Targa is all about the `Cavalcade of Motoring History’ where the great brands can showcase their own journey’s and where they are today.  Lotus have an incredible motor sport history, known around the world, so having this iconic manufacturer at Targa is a perfect fit of a world class sports car being driven, as it was intended, on our world class Targa roads" Mark Perry, Event Director, Targa Australia Pty Ltd



Common questions;

- Can I use my Lotus road registerd car? YES.
- Do I need a roll cage? NO and YES, depends which Class you enter.
- Is it for new cars only? NO.
- Do I need motorsport experience? NO. The event caters to all levels of experience.
- Can I do this with my partner and/or children? YES. The event is perfect for this.
- How fast can I go? This depends on the Class you enter with the Tour governed by road sign limits and TSD/GT Sports Trophy to 130km/h.
- Where do I stay? On Mount Buller where the Rally starts/finishes each day making it easy to manage.
- Are the roads closed? Yes during the Stages they are completely closed just for the Rally.
- Will I damage my car? This really depends how you drive but you are driving on country roads at speed.
- Does SSC manage everything? Yes pretty much, we organise food, accommodation, your entry & support during the event.


Here are some of the comments post event;


"Hi all. Just wanted to say what an awesome time I had over the weekend. Great to meet so many nice people and hear all your stories. The SSC team were simply amazing and made the whole experience even better knowing they are there to help with everything. The dinners and accommodation were perfect. And lastly to Justin. Mate I had a ball. Not once was I worried about your driving or speed and you did a amazing job. I have caught the bug and will be back whenever you want me. As I said, it is the most fun you can have with your pants on." 
- Lucas


"What can I say that hasn’t already been said .... thanks to Richard, Lee and all the guys from SSC for the hard work.  The catching up with old friends and meeting new ones, awesome roads in great cars. A special shoutout to the flat mates in K2-05 and lastly to Graham and Margarita for their company and generosity in sharing the car with me. To living the Lotus Lifestyle."
- Leigh


"Bit disappointed to find my windscreen still covered in (cheap) champagne this morning. For that reason I can only give the SSC team 11 out of 10 for the weekend. Brilliant, brilliant holiday. Thanks everyone for being part of it. See you next year!"
- Mike


"I would like to thank Richard and all the guys from SSC for a job well done....Again thanks and see you all in Tassie!"  
- Steve


"And do you know Lee and the boys also fix spectacles as well as Lotus’ ?  Mine broke on the Jamieson stage, we pull into the SSC van beside the road in a panic and within 30 secs they have my specs fixed and we are back in the rally !!"
- Giles


"i would love to thank everyone for their ongoing appreciatiation and smiles. Its my first targa since first listening to my old man rave about it all in a bmw team, then watching several crews go out without me since working for ssc. But ive had an absolute blast watching everyone come in to my stations with massive smiles and minimal problems. Its almost a holiday for me so thank you to everyone for being the people and the community you are that makes weeks likes this beyond imagination for the lil mechanic apprentices like myself. I dont have enough appreciation cookies to go round but thank you and congradulations to the lotus family. This community is truely a dream come true and we're gonna all keep going till we're at the top."
- Alastair


"...thanks a million again for such an awesome weekend. Giles (Dad) sends his best from the drivers seat!!"
- Ashton


"Many thanks to the SSC team for another incredible TH event. Thanks to everyone for the wonderful company, we look forward to doing it all again next year."
- Mel & Gino


"Thanks to everyone for an awesome time at our first THC."
- Leigh


"Thanks all, especially my mate and driving instructor, Honkie. Margarita and I had a great time with great people"
- Graham


"Great few days. Great company. Great support. Your more than welcome back Lucas. And as a driver I can't put it too lightly how much we rely on the Nav. Awesome job from my Nav, Scott. Hats off to the Navs."
- Mark


"I think I will sleep well tonight after such a top weekend."
- Giles  


"It's been a great weekend. Look forward to next time."
- Vicky 


"Thanks SSC my tyre pressures were bang on (no idea what you set them at..........) "
- Brett


"I don't think I've ever had so much fun, every one was awesome!"
- Gemma


"Vicky and i thoroughly enjoyed the Tour but even more, everyone's friendship and company.  Looking forward to next year."
- Eddie


"Thank you SSC crew, fantastic experience with amazing people!"
- Chris and Sonia


"Thanks to all in the Lotus family. It’s not just the driving, although that was fantastic . The boys at SSC are a class act. Cheerfulness and professionalism never flag. We are lucky to have such a solid support team."
- Hartley


"From Maria and I, Overwhelmed at how awesome the Lotus community is. Massive thanks to our friends at SSC, will miss you all until next time, be safe."
- Carl & Maria


"...just a quick note to say it was such a pleasure to drive with so many spirited Lotus owners. A real privilege to be amongst you all, very pleased we have returned with straight cars and some extra ballast."
- Brett


"Congrats to the Lotus Cars team. This is the sort of activation and involvement from which much larger brands could and should take inspiration. Fantastic opportunity for owners to enjoy their cars and use them as they are meant to be..."
- Mike


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