For the first time ever, the 101-year-old Italian Targa Florio will take place outside of its native Sicily, to come to sunny Victoria, Australia.
The classic tribute rally is open to vehicles built between 1906 to 1976, and has its speed capped at a maximum average of 50km/h.
The event to take place in Victoria will be called the ‘The Targa Florio Australian Tribute classic car regularity race’ and, though it’s a mouthful, it’s a major milestone for the region as motorsport seems to be becoming less supported by the general public.
The Florio Australian Tribute will take place from Thursday November 30 until Sunday December 3, traveling from Melbourne to Geelong, then beginning the first stage in that region before heading down the Great Ocean Road and back up.
The cars are ferried across the bay to Sorrento, and then take off up the Mornington Peninsula, down towards Phillip Island. The rally then proceeds up to Healesville near Lake Mountain, and loops that region before coming back through the Yarra Valley to Melbourne.
Hopefuls can visit the website to enter, though costs aren’t for Sunday racers with entries starting at $8500 before fees.
CAMS CEO Eugene Arocca says the event coming to Victoria will boost the Melbourne region as a major motorsport supporter.
“As the national sporting body for four-wheeled motor sport, we are extremely proud to be associated with such an iconic, international motor sport event and congratulate the event organisers, Visit Victoria and the Victorian Government for hosting the Targa Florio on some of our most famous roads,” Arocca says.
“We can’t wait for this to get underway at the end of this year and are looking forward to seeing yet another amazing motor sport event being held in Australia, on top of other memorable events such as Victoria’s own Formula 1 Australian Grand Prix and the Australian round of the World Rally Championship.”
The Targa Florio Rally has still had its regular run in Italy this year, though its chequered past reared i9ts head again in an unfortunate crash which killed two and injured one.
The event has been a tribute ‘rally’ rather than a fully-fledged Targa road-race for the past few decades, as the competitive ‘Targa Florio’ event ceased to exist in 1977.
The event’s legacy still lived strong after its end, however, spawning events like Targa Tasmania, Targa New Zealand, and Targa Newfoundland as well as the official continuation as Targa Florio Rally.