[Originally posted in Motor Trend]
It’s the last stage of the last day of one of the most demanding endurance road races on the planet, and for the second time in an hour I’m looking over the dash of a nearly stock 2011 Dodge Challenger SRT8 392 hurtling past what appears to be an endless chasm. Six inches of crumbling roadway and a bent galvanized pipe fence are the only things keeping us from plummeting to our doom.
In any other circumstance a twinge of fear would be completely normal, but as we pass the obstacle my mind is already focused on the next turn: a wooden bridge almost as narrow as the Challenger is wide, slickened by a torrential downpour, preceded by a jump, and followed by a hard right past a rock wall on the outside.
In between calling out a steady stream of terse instructions to my driving companion, TV’s MotoMan, my mind takes a surprising break from the nearly constant intensity that is Targa Newfoundland to summon up an unexpected quip. “I wonder how many times they’ve had to fix that fence?” I manage, but there’s no time to listen for an answer.
“Double caution, three hundred meters: medium right into jump before wooden bridge into hard right. Gravel on road.” They are words and phrases that have become common to my vocabulary over the last week. I force them out in the calm navigator voice I’ve had no choice but to perfect during some of the most tense and adrenaline-filled situations I’ve ever been in.
As we catch air over the bridge with our precision camera crew making the same jump less than a second in front of us, it occurs to me that it will be impossible to fully impart just how special Targa Newfoundland is to anybody who has never competed in it. [read the entire article @ Motor Trend]