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Tragedy hits Targa again

Targa GBR win Aaron White Angryman Photography

The coroner will examine whether wet conditions in northwest Tasmania contributed to Wednesday afternoon’s Targa Tasmania tragedy.

A 59-year-old Brisbane man, understood to be an experienced competitor, died when his car plunged 20 metres down an embankment off Olivers Road at Mt Roland. 

His wife of the same age was admitted to the Launceston General Hospital for observation overnight.

It follows last year's disastrous rally which saw NSW driver Shane Navin die in wet conditions at Mt Arrowsmith, while Leigh Mundy and co-driver Denis Neagle were killed at Cygnet the following day. 

"It's certainly disappointing for any sporting event for something like this to happen, and I was present while the safety briefing was given to all drivers by Targa officials, so safety was stressed," said Inspector Darren Hopkins. 

"At this stage the name of the driver will not be released at the request of the family." 

Organisers say the rally will continue as a non-competitive tour event this week. 

Roads will remain closed but participants will have to observe signposted speed limits.

“It has been another tough day for all our TARGA community and we offer our sincere condolences to the family and friends so impacted by this tragedy. Their loss is immense and we feel their pain. This is a very sad time,” said Targa CEO Mark Perry.

“The change to downgrade the event to touring only was a difficult one for all of us to make but one that was necessary in the current circumstances as we work through this difficult time."

Image: Angryman Photography