Targa Miata
The Targa Newfoundland is a week-long rally held on public roads. While primarily for classic cars, modern performance machinery is also welcome. The event will include 1400 miles of driving, with about a quarter of that in closed special stages. The Targa is patterned after the Targa Tasmania and Targa New Zealand. More than just a test of man and machine, it's a great opportunity to take part in a kind of racing that has almost disappeared in modern times.
Here's how it works. The race is broken up into stages, about 40 of them over the course of 5 days. A base time is assigned to each stage, and drivers try to complete the stage in that time or less. If they take longer, they're assigned one penalty point for every second they're late. New, faster cars get less time to complete the stage without penalty, and nobody gets through the event without being late for a few stages. The winner is the one who accumulates the least number of penalty points. So basically, you drive as fast as you can on closed roads.
There's also the Targa Trophy. That's awarded to any team that completes all stages in less than a given "trophy time". It's a reward of consistent speed. If you miss a stage due to an off or a mechanical problem, you won't get a Trophy.
More information may be found on the Targa Newfoundland website.

The Targa Miata was built specifically for the event, and finished 16th overall in 2008. With the 2011 powertrain, the car will be capable of winning the event overall - assuming the crew is able to take full advantage of its performance!