Founded in 2007, Targa Trophy is no stranger to the automotive lifestyle and culture that we’ve grown so close to and love. When we first caught wind of this rally, we literally had no idea what it was all about. That changed this weekend when we attended our first TT Experience, Event #3, the Euro vs. JDM Festival and Rally from Los Angeles to Las Vegas.
So, what is Targa Trophy? It’s a single-day rally based on a predetermined “target time.” Teams are made up of a car, a driver, and a navigator. The rally begins with a stopwatch at the starting line, and competitors are required to navigate to various checkpoints along the way. Each checkpoint is documented by a photo that is uploaded to Facebook or Instagram. The goal is to complete each checkpoint and make it to the finish line as close to the target time as possible. The team that does this the best takes home the trophy. It’s important to state that this event isn’t at all like Bullrun or Gumball 3000, with cars flat out racing each other. Reckless driving is frowned upon. However, this didn’t stop teams from a little “spirited” driving—if you know what I mean.
For this particular rally, the starting line was at the Red Bull HQ in Santa Monica. Gates opened at 8 a.m., and teams soon started rolling in for registration and parked in their respective areas. This was a great time to check out all the cars, reunite with friends, and relax before the rally. All teams were required to sport the official Targa Trophy badge on both front doors, which made it easy to recognize fellow Targa Trophiers. There was quite a unique mix of cars, ranging from a modified Toyota Camry to a fully built show car—a Liberty Walk Widebody M3. After enjoying all the eye candy and drooling over some of the cleanest rides the West Coast has to offer, it was time for the Drivers Meeting and to get the show on the road. Once everyone was briefed, the mass exodus began, as teams started to line up to begin their journey to Las Vegas.
*Images by: CarNinja