It’s a good day to be in the Flyin’ Miata camp. As of the conclusion of Day 3 of competition, both the V8 Roadster and the Supercharged 2006 MX-5 hold the top position in their respective classes. While Keith and Janel Tanner have managed to sling their 430-horsepower machine through Wednesday’s nine stages to take the top slot, Brandon Fitch and I overcame a few small obstacles to zero all of our times through the day. Despite my fat-fingering the egg-timers ahead of the incredibly technical Greenspond stage, we came in just two-seconds outside of dead zero and well within our plus or minus nine-second window.
I also received a front-row showing of Fitch’s driving prowess after the car stalled at the start of the third-to-last stage. In a desperate push to make up lost time, the Flyin’ Miata engineer pushed the 240-horse Miata to 128 kph through a series of undulating turns. That figure is just two kph shy of our maximum allowable speed. Crossing that barrier brings all sorts of unsavory penalties.
Thursday will bring forth a whole new set of challenges as our window narrows to plus or minus five seconds. While we used today to train ourselves to arrive at the flying finish well within our final day tolerances, fatigue is beginning to set in on both Brandon and I, greatly increasing the chance of a careless error that could cost us our lead. Regardless of how we wrap up on Friday, the fact that we can say that we tied for first across the first three days of the 2011 Targa Newfoundland is a story I’ll be blathering at cocktail parties for years.
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