AS entries continue to come in for the first round of the inaugural Kumho Modern Sports Cars Endurance Series at Wakefield Park's AASA State Championship meeting on June 1-2, TargaRacing has linked with Nightingale Motorsport for Bathurst's Terry Nightingale to join TargaRacing and drive a Mazda MX-5 NC.
The 25-year-old Nightingale, who is course commentator at Wakefield Park and Winton Raceway, as well as a driver coach with V8 Race Experience and at Wakefield Park with their fleet of AUSCARS, was originally chosen to co-drive with TargaRacing team principal Chris Gough in the MX-5, but it has now changed.
Sydney's Brian Anderson had entered his TargaRacing Porsche Boxster for the event, but the new car had mechanical problems at last weekend's Porsche Rennsport Festival at Sydney Motorsport Park, and he will now join Nightingale in the MX-5, while Gough will take the drive of his all-new Toyota 86.
Over a long period Anderson has been a prolific winner of AASA and Improved Production races in a variety of cars including mainly BMWs, and he will now jump in as Nightingale's co-driver in a Targa Racing Mazda MX-5 NC.
Nightingale is excited about moving from the commentary booth to the driver's seat, as his first preference in racing is in the very popular enduros.
"I was rapt to get the call-up from Chris (Gough) for I really enjoy this type of racing, and on top of that TargaRacing have been getting some first class results, while Chris is a good bloke and it should be a lot of fun," Nightingale said.
Nightingale has always shown above average ability from his years as a Bathurst Light Car Club junior competing in their events, and then as he did his first circuit race meetings in a HQ Holden, but he never quite had the funding to proceed any further, but was lucky enough to pick up the odd drive.
His first enduro was in the 2009 Wakefield 300 driving a Chris Clearihan Future Racer with Wagga's Hayden Pullen as co-driver, and he opened eyes when he qualified fourth, and then after being second fastest in the warm up was running well in the race near the leading bunch, but in Pullen's stint the engine failed.
He was back the following year with another of Clearihan Braddon Auto Future Racers, but it was not a happy week when many problems beset the team, and it was run in torrential rain but they still did a great job to finish the race.
The upcoming Modern Sports Car enduro at Wakefield Park won't be his first drive in a Mazda MX-5, but it will be his first in an NC. He drove a Tampered Motorsport MX-5 NA in the 2011 Winton 300 and finished third in class, while last year drove with Adam Ronke in an NB and finished 11th outright.
The 2012 Winton 300 was an eye opener for Nightingale, when he saw first-hand the strength of TargaRacing as they finished 5th, 6th and 8th outright in a great team effort.
The Bathurst driver was last year able to race his own car for the first time, after a consortium purchased an Improved Production 6 cylinder EF Ford Falcon for him, and it saw him compete in 25 races for a 100 per cent finishing record.
Gough, an extremely talented driver in his own right, is looking forward to the opening round of the Modern Sports Cars next week when he teams up with Nightingale for the first time.
"We're excited to have Terry drive with us. I've been hoping to get him into one of our cars for a while now, so when Modern Sports Cars was announced I called him straight away. I'm looking forward to see how he gets on in one of our TargaRacing NC MX-5s it should be a bit different to his big Falcon," he said.
The Modern Sports Cars opener will feature two one-hour races, one Saturday the second on Sunday.
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