FROM childhood friends to driver and co-driver racing classic cars, Paul Crute and Paul Gusterson attribute their love of motorsport as the key to their long friendship.
The pair will line-up in Bickley resident Crute�s 1965 Ford Mustang for their fifth Quit Targa West tarmac rally this weekend.
�It�s more than just the racing. The racing is the adrenaline rush, but the real love is the classic cars and the social aspect. There�s a really good atmosphere,� Crute said.
�We started racing far too late in life to be any good, but that�s not why we do it.
�My car is like a show car that we get to race. I have a lot of pride in my car and we use it in Targa events.
�Five years ago, I bought the 1965 Mustang with the intention of myself and mate Gusterson doing Targa West.
It was a trip to Frank Huber�s workshop to get my 1966 Mustang street car serviced and seeing all the classic vehicles he was doing for Targa that sparked the idea.
�The car was brought in from the US as a road going coupe. Once it arrived, we stripped it right down to the chassis, sandblasted it and built the car around us.�
The field of 60 vehicles entered in this year�s Quit Targa West is likely to appeal to any motoring enthusiast�s taste, with a variety of pristine classics like the Ford Mustangs, to exotic modern vehicles such as Bathurst legend Jim Richard�s 2014 Porsche Cayman.
Competitors will face 34 tarmac rally stages over the four days, covering a range of conditions from tight city sprints to fast flowing open roads. By the time they have completed the last stage on Sunday August 16, the teams will have travelled an overall length of 898 kilometres, and completed 239 competitive kilometres through Wanneroo, Malaga, Whiteman Park, Kalamunda, Toodyay, Lower Chittering, Bullsbrook and Perth City.
Event Director Ross Tapper says he is really appreciative of the support from the local governments involved with the event.
�Quit Targa West organisers would like to thank the cities, shires and local residents for lending us some of the best roads in Perth. The hospitality and support we receive from these communities is always overwhelming,� Mr Tapper said.
Spectators are welcome to catch the action for free from the designated viewing points set-up on each stage. The Spectator Guide, which includes a program of events, details where these points are, what times the cars will be coming past, and when road closures will be in place. The Spectator Guide can be downloaded from the Quit Targa West website www.targawest.com.au.
The 2015 Quit Targa West is sponsored by Healthway and Quit.