by Wayne & Geraldine Hough
From the opening in Victoria Square on Wednesday 16th November 2016 to Sunday evening at the Motorsport Legends Dinner, we experienced what can only be described as “Rev-Head Heaven”.
At midday on Wednesday the sound of a 1980’s F1 Ferrari again reverberated around the Square. This announced the official opening of the 2016 Adelaide Motorsport Festival, organised by the Sporting Car Club of SA. Three 1980’s VIP guest F1 drivers – Stefan Johannson, Pierluigi Martini and Ivan Capelli - were re-introduced to Adelaide. Stefan Johannson reacquainted himself with the actual Ferrari that he drove in the Adelaide F1 Grand Prix. The opening ceremony was part of the Media Opportunities that Wayne had received with his media photographer accreditation from the SCCSA for the entire event.
Victoria Square with F1 cars lined up
L to R, Ivan Capelli, Stefan Johannson and Pierluigi Martini on the dais
Stefan re-united with his F1 Ferrari
It was an early start on Thursday morning heading down to the start of the Prima Tour at Victoria Park. We were joined by other MGCCSA Members, Arthur and Craig Ruediger, Pat Mullins, Barb Harrington and Steve Spong, Stan Ward and all the way from Sydney, our friend and former member, Christopher Hunt.
Our MGCGT dressed up for the event
Christopher with his Porsche
The early part of the Tour to Collingrove Hillclimb was in warm but pleasant conditions. Entrants were greeted with a sumptuous morning tea, and the opportunity to have a spirited run up the Hill. Then the convoy headed off over the hills to McLaren Vale for our lunch stop at the at Penny Hill winery. By this time, the temperature started to become rather testing in a non-air conditioned and non-power steering MGC.
Geraldine & Christopher chatting at Collingrove
The cars lined up in the pits at Collingrove
Stefan Johannson in the Ferrari heading up the Collingrove Hill
After lunch, we headed down to Goolwa Airport, where we had the opportunity for up to 2 high speed runs down the runway. This was great fun and it was surprising how quickly the end of run bollards arrived!
Then we headed back through Clarendon to Victoria Park for a reception at Stuart O’Grady’s Velo Restaurant in the old grandstand.
Friday morning it was an early start but, for us, a very short drive to the bottom of Anstey’s Hill to help with Special Stages 2 and 5 of the Classic Adelaide Rally. We were joined by several other MGCCSA Members, Bev Waters, Adrian Ward (who organised our club’s participation), Berry Treffers, Paul Dallwitz, Ian Buckley, Ian Moulds and Jason Edwards. Geraldine (below left) had the pressure job of using the Rally Safe tablet system to give the drivers their start times at 30 second intervals. Wayne reckons he had the best job of Start Line-up official as he could have brief chats to all the drivers while checking their safety equipment.
Being at the start allowed us to see and hear the supercars, Ferrari’s, McLaren’s etc driven by the VIPs blasting off the Start line (above right). There were no dramas and our stages finished on time.
Stefan and Vern Schuppan comparing notes with Nick Percat looking on from behind
The Marque Tour starting the stage
Stefan telling Ivan Capelli to keep up
Friday night we headed down to the Gouger Street Party. At around 5:30pm, the 1980’s F1 cars were escorted to Gouger Street together with a selection of Supercars and Rally entrants. Because of the excellent weather, the area was full of enthusiastic spectators. Up on stage, the VIP drivers were introduced to the crowd and afterwards the stage was used for a band playing appropriate 80’s music.
Saturday was the first full day of the Motorsport Festival at Victoria Park. A sunny day greeted fans and the facilities and displays were excellent. Once we entered the park Wayne had to go and sign-on as an accredited photographer and then we made our way to the Sporting Car Club enclosure which was provided for members to relax and enjoy track entertainment.
During a walk through the Paddock area we met up with Kevin and Val Weeks and Simon and Rebecca Wenzel in the Supaloc pit. Kevin was very upbeat and keen to get the Lamborghini out onto the circuit. Simon was there to make sure the car behaved itself.
The Victoria Park Sprint was focussed around the F1 cars and drivers, but included a highly diverse field of historic touring cars, sports cars and classic motorcycles. There were many displays of some of the greatest classic cars as well as selected modern categories. The on-track action was competitive and timed with over 200 cars on track in more than 17 categories.
As the temperature rose Geraldine sought refuge back in the SCCSA enclosure while Wayne went out to the dedicated Media Photography positions.
Wayne thought that the Wakefield Street Hairpin position was the best and most exciting spot to photograph. The only thing between him and the action was the waist high concrete barrier, at the very edge of the track with no wire to spoil the shots; he was convinced that if your telephoto lens was too long, it could be clipped by a passing race car!
The highlight for us was the 1980’s F1 cars flat out again on Adelaide’s streets!
Sunday the temperature rose again but that did not deter the hardy spectators or the hard-working officials.
On Sunday night, the weekend was topped off with the Motorsport Legends Dinner at the Top of the Ark in the Arkaba Hotel. We were greeted with champagne, followed by a fabulous 3 course dinner and coffee/tea. Between courses the Master of Ceremonies, Tony Parkinson (Penny Hill Winery and the late Phil Bradey’s mate), introduced the dignitaries including Tim Possingham from the SCCSA who was the Director of the AMF and then Tony interviewed the three ex-F1 drivers. It was lovely to hear their fond memories of the Adelaide Grand Prix that ran from 1985 to 1995 here on our city streets. Stefan Johannson talked about being re-united with his car and his specialty range of watches and Ivan Capelli spoke about his commentating role for the current F1 Season on Italian TV.
For the 50th Anniversary of the birth of our Club in 2006, Barry Bahnisch, a senior Club Member, took the preparation of a commemorative book for that Jubilee in hand. As he said in his Preface, he saw it as an opportunity to provide some recompense for all the enjoyment, and the friends he had made, over the 50 years of participation in Club activities.
All the Members at the time were able to purchase a lovely copy of the resulting book, titled Marque of Respect, and it is a wonderful reminder of the lovely man who put it together.
At this 60th Anniversary, those same friends are very sorry that he is now, due to ill health, unable to continue his involvement in updating his book to mark this latest milestone.
I am not intending to attempt to fill Barry’s shoes, nor are we, the Club, going to re-publish the book, so this article will be a brief update to cover the past 10 years to this 60th Anniversary. Unlike Barry, I was quite a new Member at the time of the 50th Anniversary, and was thus very interested in finding out about the history of our Club.
For those Members who would also like to catch up on the detailed history of the first 50 years, a copy of Barry’s book, Marque of Respect, is in our Club Library.
And so to what has been happening in the Club over the past 10 years, the sixth decade.
THE FIRST MEETING AND NOW.
“One morning, Malcolm Caire met Ron Williams and Bob Brown in his office at Motors Limited, to discuss the formation of an MG Car Club. The inaugural meeting, attended by over 100 people, was held on 10th April 1956, at the Kingsway Building on what is now Morphett Street. Bob Brown was voted in as the first President, with Ron Williams as Secretary and Don Shinners as Assistant Secretary. Inaugural Patron Charles Ellis wished the Club success and cautioned against the formation of cliques that would mar the promotion of club spirit and camaraderie. It was then decided to meet again in a month's time - the second Tuesday of the month which continues to this day.” (Extract from Marque of Respect) An Honour Board, in our clubroom, lists the names of the Inaugural Committee.
And so the MG Car Club of SA was born. 50 years on, Barry remembered that the majority of the inaugural committee were “still only in their 20’s!” Now 60 years on, it is unusual to have new members who are not retired in order to be able to have the time to participate. Owning and caring for MG’s must be good for our health however, as we have several Members in, or close to, their 80’s and at least one in his 90’s, who still enjoy running their cars, and “playing” with them – after all the cars are also getting on in years as well. One of the Founding members of the Committee, Ian Curwen-Walker is still a member of the current Committee.
In early 1973, the Club began negotiations to acquire our own clubrooms and thanks to the foresight of those pioneering members, the MGCCSA continues to prosper in its current location at Brompton. We are still indebted to those who did so much of the modification work to accommodate our Club Members, including Ian Purdie, David and Joy Pearson (Life Members), and Bob and Shelley Bazzica, former owners of MG Sales and Service, and many others whose stories are related by Barry in the Marque of Respect.
A Dinner Dance was held on 11th November 2006, to commemorate the Jubilee and launch the Marque of Respect book. Early in 2006, our Club Membership stood at around 870. The vision to achieve a membership of 1000 was beginning to look possible. At the close of 2015, our Club Membership stood at over 950 having looked close to reaching the magical 1000 in 2012.
The global financial situation affects everyone, so we still have not managed to attain that magic number of Members – maybe in our Anniversary year. The MG Car Club of South Australia continues to be the largest single marque Club in our State, with the current membership now over 880 and the number expected to climb again throughout the year.
PRESIDENT’s and SECRETARY’s
The job of President of the MG Car Club of SA has always been a complex one, although considered to have been rewarding for those who have taken it on, with two people having served for 4 years consecutively, the maximum consecutive term allowed in our Constitution for President, including David Holmes (prior to 2006) and Wayne Hough (2009 – 2013).
The Secretary’s job involves looking after the membership data, correspondence and meeting agendas, a position that Arthur Ruediger has filled for the best part of 12 years, a record for any Secretary in the history of our Club.
The Treasurer’s job has also been filled in the past by many hardy souls (listed to 2006 in Marque of Respect).
|2005 - 2006||Rod Byrne||Arthur Ruediger|
|2006 - 2009||Barry Softley|
|2007 - 2008||Fred Neild||Arthur Ruediger|
|2009 - 2012||Wayne Hough||Arthur Ruediger||Geraldine Hough||initiated the current computer based financial system|
|2013 – 2014||Leyland George||Arthur Ruediger||Alan Cardnell|
|2015 - current||Allan Semmler||Arthur Ruediger||Alan Cardnell|
In 2010, Mike Greenwood and Arthur Ruediger were both awarded Life Membership of our Club, in recognition of their outstanding and long term service to the MGCCSA Inc.
Ed Ordynski continues as our sixth Patron, attending many of our special events and entertaining and informing our Members with updates of his continuing involvement in the motoring industry – not as fast as previously (see Marque of Respect) - but now he is very involved in the economic use of our dwindling fossil fuel resources, and new upcoming technologies. He is also the prime mover in encouraging the Club to move to embrace high tech innovations such as social media like Facebook and others.
In 2008, Fred Neild, with the agreement of the Executive Committee instituted an award to be given by the current President to the Member considered by the President to have contributed outstanding service to the MG Car Club of South Australia during the previous Club year. Recipients to date are:
|2008 Jim Underwood||2009 Bev Waters||2010 Ian Denny||2011 Geraldine Hough|
|2012 Di Holmes||2013 Berry Treffers||2014 Sandra Cardnell||2015 Steve Spong|
MG NATIONAL MEETINGS
Our Club will be hosting this event again in 2017, having previously organised the meeting in 2010. MG National Meetings are a major annual event in the Australian MG calendar and the Adelaide event is always well attended as we are ideally placed at the centre point between the West and the Eastern States. The 2010 MG National Meeting, centred around West Beach and held over the Easter holiday, welcomed around 400 registrants, both Competition and Social. Our event included a Sprint at Mallala Motorsport Park, an Observation Run and a Motokhana at Monarto, near Murray Bridge, as well as a Social run and the usual Rocker Cover Racing etc. Next year’s event promises to have similar activities and be focussed around the picturesque Glenelg beach area. There is always a great deal of friendly rivalry between the Clubs and especially South Australia and our Victorian MG friends, as they are our nearest MG Car Club neighbours.
MG National Meetings over the past 10 years have been held in:
|2007 Gold Coast, Qld||2008 Tamworth, NSW||2009 Geelong, Vic||2010 Adelaide, SA||2011 Newcastle, NSW|
|2012 Hobart, Tas||2013 Toowoomba, Qld||2014 Ballina, Gold Coast MG Car Club, Qld||2015 Melbourne, Vic||2016 Perth, WA|
In conjunction with MG National Meetings, our Club has an award that is given to the Club Member (MGCCSA) who receives the most points at that year’s National Meeting. This is called the Knox Trophy and the recipients over the past 10 years were:
|2006 Bev Waters||2007 Laurie Houghton||2008 Ian Curwen-Walker||2009 Bev Waters||2010 Graham Loader|
|2011 Graham Loader||2012 Glenn Kirk||2013 Tim Edmonds||2014 Jason Edwards||2015 Jason Edwards|
In 2006, the Victorian MG Club won the Challenge held over the June long weekend and South Australia triumphed in 2007.
This event is a Motorsport competition between the members of the MG Car Club of Victoria and our Club members, although other MG Car Clubs are invited if they wish to come and join in.
When SA hosts the event, it usually consists of a Sprint at Mallala Motorsport Park and a Hillclimb at the SCCSA’s Hillclimb at Collingrove, near Angaston in the Barossa Valley. Our Club won again in 2008.
Victoria hosted a Challenge in 2011 with a Sprint at the famous Sandown Raceway (it is something to be able to say, at the time a very amateur motorsport person myself, that you have driven the Sandown circuit!) and a Hillclimb at their own hill-climb, Rob Roy.
Since then, our Club won in 2012, the Victorian MG Car Club won again in 2013.
It is always fun to look forward to the Sunday night dinner when the trophies are presented and see which State has won that year.
CLUB COMPETITION CHAMPION
Each year, the person winning the most points, driving an MG, in Motorsport events is awarded as the Club Competition Champion. The winners for the past 10 years were:
|2007 Bob Schapel||2008 John Kemp||2009 Laurie Houghton||2010 Wayne Hough||2011 Tim Edmonds|
|2012 Laurie Houghton||2013 Laurie Houghton||2014 Rob Hall||2015 Tim Edmonds|
THE AUSTRALIAN ANNUAL KIMBER RUN
The Australian Annual Kimber Run continues as an Annual event attracting upwards of 140 cars. I remember going to the start point in Blackwood, as a new Member before our first MG was completely restored, on a very wet day, to see the participants off to the Fleurieu area for the day’s run.
Kimber Runs are always well attended, in spite of the sometimes inclement weather.
In 2006, the Club run travelled to the Fleurieu peninsula, and in 2007, to Tanunda, with 2008 being a lovely run to Mannum, memorable particularly for 2 rare MG K3s, including Phil Bradey’s and a visiting K3 from Victoria owned by Adam Berryman, that were flagged off first to lead the way. Such a fabulous sound as they left together from the Arkaba Hotel car park area, where registration was held that year.
The 2009 run to Balaklava proved a testing day for all MGs and their drivers alike, with temperatures hitting over 39deg C on the return trip. The annual event consists of a run of around 100Kms, stopping for morning tea and lunch, before returning home to Adelaide. That year was one of the last times we were privileged to see the ex-Prince Bira MG K3, then still owned by Phil Bradey. Sadly, Phil died in 2010 and the K3 is now in the loving hands of John and Helen Gillett, who reside in Victoria, although we see John, Helen and the K3 back for events regularly.
The 2010 Australian Annual Kimber Run went to Strathalbyn, and for 2011 returned to Mannum and in 2012 travelled to Nuriootpa.
Mike Greenwood, a Life Member of our Club since 2010, must have really enjoyed the runs to Strathalbyn as he moved there in 2012, handing over the management of the annual run, after some 11 years as Event Coordinator, to Allan and Raelene Semmler, who have organised the event for the past 3 years.
In 2013, we visited Victor Harbour and in 2014 and 2015, the Club went to the Barossa Valley to Tanunda for lunch. It continues to be a challenge to the organisers to come up with new and exciting options within a prescribed distance from Adelaide, and the 2016 run will be going to Murray Bridge.
Over the period from 2010 to 2012, major renovations were made to our Clubrooms in Brompton. With the aid of Arthur Ruediger’s brother in law, Bart, Wayne and Geraldine Hough and Arthur redesigned and installed a new kitchen and bar area. Mick Mitolo provided the plumbing and electrical work, installing the oven donated by the Houghs. Mick also provided the tiles and the tiling work as well as the labour to install the floating floor.
At the same time, with help from Leyland George, Arthur, Bart and Wayne installed a large covered verandah where visiting display cars can be shown off under cover at meetings. Thanks to Leyland’ suggestion, we have large folding glass doors that can be opened to allow vehicle access right into the Clubrooms or simply to extend the Clubrooms for major events.
Other minor changes included Wayne and Geraldine installing shelving in the cellar area, and planting and redesigning the front garden area, with irrigation. Early in 2013, Arthur, Leyland and Wayne organised new concrete paths from the front gate to the house entrance with security lighting to enable our Members to have safe access to the Clubrooms.
In 2014, as the new President, Leyland organised a new audio visual system with a digital TV and high end audio. He also oversaw the renewal of the air-conditioning system and the guttering on the house.
As a result of these and other continued improvements, our Club is the envy of many other car clubs in South Australia for having such a spacious and lovely home base for Members to enjoy.
As reported in the Marque of Respect, our Club celebrated the 50th Anniversary of the MGA in 2005. We were able to celebrate again in 2015, as MGA’s turned 60. The club held a number of displays at events throughout the year including a display at the Clipsal 500 in Adelaide.
In 2012, the MGB turned 50 and again there were many celebrations including a banner that now adorns the outdoor verandah area of our Clubrooms, alongside that from the MGA 50th. As the MG National Meeting was in Tasmania that year, many MGB’s from across Australia ventured across the Bass Strait to Hobart and then toured the island after the event. Birthday cakes featured high on the list of essential items at the celebrations.
With many more birthdays and milestones to come, the MG Car Club of South Australia is looking forward to a bright and successful future.
On behalf of all the people who have served on the Executive Committee, and in other capacities within the Club, both in the past 10 years and before, thank you to all our Members who continue to support us in our efforts to keep the MG name and Marque alive and flourishing, and may it continue to do so for many years to come.
Steve Spong & Barb Harrington's UK Trip
In September, Barb and I spent 3 weeks in the UK prior to our Med. trip. We managed to clock up some 2000 plus miles touring in our Ford Focus seeing family and friends, plus taking in some of the motoring heritage.
Unfortunately we were unable to schedule in a trip to the Goodwood Revival, but will return there one day.
The Morgan Factory
Our first full day took us, that is Barb and I plus my brother and sister in-law to Malvern and the Morgan Car Factory for their guided tour. Malvern is located in the lovely Malvern Hills about 10 miles south of Worcester.
For only fifteen quid this is a great way to spend half a day and I can thoroughly recommend it, even to people with no real interest in cars. Barb for one was sceptical about going but really enjoyed the day.
There is a real sense of team work at the factory born out by the average length of service for the 180 employees being some 25 years! The guide was great and a proper member of the work force, not just a paid guide. Their web site is well worth a look.
For a great report on the factory and the tour see Robyn Wakelam's WAG report in the September Magazine, or on the web site. The "excellent" rating on Trip Advisor is warranted.
On Sunday 20th September, I went with an old school friend to Shelsley Walsh for the "Autumn Speed Finale" run by the "The Midland Automobile Club".
Established in 1901 and located in the beautiful Worcestershire country side, Shelsley Walsh Speed Hill Climb is the oldest motor sport track in the world having continuously staged events since 1905 (war time excepted).
The track is 1000 yards (914m) long rising 328 feet (100m), with an average gradient of 10.9% but it is up to 16% at its steepest. It is also quite narrow at 12 feet (3.66m) in parts.
Viewing is excellent with access available along all of one side of the track, plus spectators were allowed to wander freely around the pits. Adjacent to the pits are converted stables where there is a full restaurant, a burger bar, and a licensed bar all surrounding a manicured lawn. All very civilised.
There was perfect weather for this Autumn Speed Finale, which was staged as 2 separate events over 2 days. Classes for the Sunday included:
* Roadgoing Production Cars, classes for both cars upto 200cc (Mazda, Lotus etc) and over 2000cc (Aston Martin, BMW, Subaru ...)
* Roadgoing Specialist Production Cars (Clubman style)
* Modified Production Cars
* Sports Libre and Hill Climb Super Sports (Clubmans, Ginetta, modified Escort etc)
* Lotus Saloons and Sports (Elans and Elise)
* Lotus Sports Libre (Single Seater Race Cars)
* Race Cars, various category by engine capacity.
* Classic Saloons and Sports Cars Pre 1975. (Including an MGB Roadster and a BGT [both 1950cc], MG Midget, E-Type and MK1 Sprite)
* Classic Sports Libre (Pre 1975 race cars)
* Ferrari Cars under the Pirelli Hill Climb Championship (Mainly moderns plus a couple of Dino 308s)
* Morgan Cars
* TVR Cars
* Electric and Hybrid Cars (There being a sole entrant in a Mitsubishi I MiEV.)
There were also plenty of classic and exotic cars in the car park too.
So as can be seen, given the number of classes, some 150+ entrants and multiple runs per car, that it was a very full, varied and exciting day's motorsport. There was only one mishap with a "Dallara" race car entering the bushes at great speed, bending the car but luckily only hurting the driver's pride.
So how fast did they go?
1. Well the fastest time of the day was by a 1300 turbo-charged single seater at 26.22 seconds. (125.5 Kph)
2. The MGB Roadster and BGT were very close both clocking just under 37.2s or 88.5 Kph. The 3.8 litre E-Type posting a 36.45s.
3. The fastest Ferrari was a 4.3 litre 430 Coupe at 34.88 seconds (94.3 Kph), and out of the 8 other Ferraris only 3 were quicker than the MGBs!
4. The Electric Mitsubishi did a 51.41second best time, or 64 Kph.
By way of a footnote:
* The winner of the first event in August 1905 was a Mr. Ernest Instone driving a 35Hp Daimler and clocking 77.6 seconds or 42.4 Kph.
* The current outright record is held by Martin Groves in a 3500 "Gould GR55B NME", at 22.58 seconds or 145.8 Kph (A 3.5 litre V8 single seater).
We had booked a week in a house in Marazion, Cornwall overlooking St. Michael's Mount. A beautiful part of the world and the "Mount" is a pretty spectacular sight by day or night. Whilst open to the public it is still the home of the St. Aubyn family. The whole area is well worth a visit.
Anyway, Marazion is only a stone's throw from Penzance where we spotted 2 MGA's in the harbour car park. However upon further investigation, the cars were both seen to be wearing Victorian number plates, and they were not alone!
It turned out that as a part of the MGA 60th celebrations, the MG CC UK had organised a 10 day, 1550mile, tour of the length of the island from Land's End to John O'Groats commencing 7th September. This event had attracted a total of some 70 cars for the run, with about 50 signed up for the entire route. Of these 15 Australian cars were registered for the event with many undertaking their own European Tour en-route to the UK.
There should be a full report on the event in the MG CC UK's November issue of "Safety Fast".
As an aside, when touring the Yorkshire Moors we visited the village of Goathland, better known as Aidensfield the location for the TV series "Heartbeat".
The pub, garage and village square all sporting TV memorabilia and period cars. There is even a steam train providing a local service between the villages and the coastal town of Whitby.
****** to view other photos - click here
This time we tried another venue, different from the GoKarts at Gepps Cross. 14 intrepid karters arrived for the briefing and the 40 lap relay.
The session consisted of teams of two, with each driver doing approx 20 laps each round, with two rounds. This gave the team the potential to do 80 laps.
The 'winners' of the session was to be the first team to do 80 laps. Congrats to Linsay and Alex Hick on winning the trophies.
1st place - Linsay & Alex Hick with their trophies
Many comments were made during the sessions about the karts needing power steering. The track was short with many turns and few straights making the turning of the karts very tiring after nearly 40 laps.
Many thanks to those who came for the day. Thanks to Bev for the additonal photos. See the results below;
Kart team members 13 Linsay & Alex 6 Geoff & Isabelle 21 Mark & Kerri 9 Allan & Laurie 15 Barry & Darren 14 Steve & Peter 5 Tim & Keryn
5 Oct - 19 people have confirmed to attend. Max number on the day is 30. Full deposit has been paid. See Peter to pay your money.
I have organized another Go Kart night for the MG Car Club which has been popular over the years.
At Fast Karts, Deacon Road, Richmond.
The booking of the premises had to be done a long way in advance.
Booked date Sunday Oct 11 at 1pm.
Need to be at Fast Karts 1/2 hr before start to register.
Please reply to Peter Coulson with your interest and confirm attendance for this event.
14 is the minimum drivers . $50 per driver
Maximum is 30 people = 10 teams of 3
Endurance format for teams of 3 = 40 laps x 3. Pit Stops, and driver changes after 20 laps.
Endurance, details at http://www.ultrafastkarts.com.au/adelaide/endurance-racing.html
Family and friends welcome.
mob: 0419215964 email@example.com
As you all know, the Goodwood Revival offers a great opportunity to dress up and pretend for 3 days that you are part of high society of the 50s and 60s. The Festival of Speed however, is not seen as a dress up event, so why should we want to go? One major attraction has to be that it is held in June, in the English summer, and if you are lucky, as we were, the sun shines from a clear blue sky and temperatures reach mid 20’s to 30 degrees C. Believe me, 30 in England is quite hot enough and I am used to Adelaide summers! I never thought I would get a sun tan in the UK and Europe but indeed I did.
|Wayne and I in the Bonham’s Auction Marquee where pre dinner drinks and nibbles were served|
Thursday night before the FoS, there is the Members’ Ball, a full black tie event, held in the beautiful heritage Goodwood House and grounds. At 6:45pm, be met in the main car park by VIP chauffeured cars to take you to the Bonhams marquee, a huge area filled with beautiful automobiles and memorabilia ready for the auction to be held on Saturday. Wander amongst the cars with a glass (or two) of Veuve Cliquot champagne with like-minded people dressed for the event.
After the pre-dinner drinks, everyone goes to the House for a 3 course dinner with more wine and lots of great conversation with people from all over the world who are getting ready for a fabulous event.
|Wayne in the Dining Room||Wayne and I at our table for dinner|
As soon as it gets dark – about 10pm in England in the summer! – the giant sculpture that presides over the FoS is unveiled, 2 full sized Mazda (it is their anniversary in 2015) Le Mans cars high up in the air above the hill climb route. Lord March tells everyone about the construction of the sculpture and fireworks announce the official beginning of the FoS and then we can all retire to the Ballroom for dancing until it is time to retire for a night’s sleep.
|Fireworks over the Sculpture outside the House|
The FoS itself was a revelation with huge temporary displays, some of 2 and 3 stories, from major automotive manufacturers, Audi, Mercedes, Bentley, Jaguar, Lamborghini to name but a few. Favoured clients are invited to the upper floors and balconies to view the event.
|Looking over to Goodwood House||The Mazda Pavillion|
The Bentley agent tried to persuade me that a nice new Bentley Continental GT would be just the thing in our Australian garage. We had our photo taken with the grid girls from the Circuit of the Americas and a thrilling simulator ride in the McLaren F1 car driven by Jenson Button around Catalunya GP Circuit in Spain.
There are other entertainment options such as sitting in the Martini Racing tent and outdoor area sipping that famous old drink or having a photo taken sitting in a classic car with the background of the Italian lakes.
|The lawned area in front of the GRRC Kinrara Pavilion on the edge of the first corner.|
Or you can take the tractor train to the very top of the hill climb (much easier than the walk!), or sit on the lawns in front of the GRRC Enclosure for morning tea or just for a short rest. At the top of the hill, there is a turning circle where each group of cars wait to take the return trip down the hill - a very! expensive parking area. The drivers come over to the crowd and sign autographs or other memorabilia. One man had his shirt covered with signatures. You can rub shoulders with Valentino Rossi, fresh from his win in Europe, Rene Arnoux of F1 racing fame, BJ Baldwin – the American Baja driver and Sir Stirling Moss, who still drives the iconic 722 Mercedes, in which he won the Le Mans 24 hour, all the way up the Goodwood hill, the car being in slightly better nick than the driver, but I should be so fit at his age!
The paddock area at FoS is open to everyone, so you can wander among old F1 cars, historic Le Mans cars and 2 Porsches – still covered in mud and road grime from the previous fortnight’s Le Mans win, or have your Rolex watch serviced by the technicians in the Rolex building, then last but not least, ogle the beautiful silver Mercedes cars starting with 722 and including some of the rarest Mercedes cars ever to be seen outside Germany.
Over by the main sculpture on Thursday, the Beast of Turin, a 28.5Lt Fiat S76 sat ready to go up the hill, almost 2m tall and running for the first time in over 100 years. Friday to Sunday, it belched flames and smoke as it went up the rack. The straw bales had to be moved back to ensure that they didn’t catch fire!
From any of the many grandstands, you can watch the progress of the cars up the hill; one corner, Molecomb, catching out several drivers and trashing some very nice cars, including a brand new prototype Jaguar, a late model Lamborghini and a Le Mans Mazda Longtail! In the pic in case you can't tell, this is the remains of the Mazda longtail.
The Cartier Style and Luxe area is the Concours event set out on the lawn near the Library building, where guest jazz bands entertain the seated guests. Inside the Library enclosure, there is a continuous Disco for those with enough energy and youth to participate. The pic below shows the library in the background with the lawns full of lovely concours cars.
Of course, to get to the FoS from Australia means that there are other things to before and after and so many wonderful places to visit. Paris in the summer is wonderful; the silk fabric shops near the Sacre Coeur beckon and the wine and food are justly famous. We took a trip to Giverny near Vernon, NW of Paris, and the garden where Monet lived and got his inspiration for his beautiful Impressionist art.
The famous bridge is still there and the waterlilies are in flower in June, as well as the most beautiful cottage style garden that we have ever seen. I also enjoyed the few days we spent in Lille near the Belgian border. Wayne went to visit Fromelles and the Australian WW1 Memorial. The Louvre at Lens outside Lille is filled with wonderful art and a trip to Roubaix, East of Lille, included a gallery laid out in a beautiful old swimming baths called La Piscine and the Textile Manufacturing Museum demonstrating the development of the looms used for weaving the famous Flemish tapestries. Another day we took the train to Dunquerque (Dunkirk) where the British undertook Operation Dynamo during WW2. One of the original boats is still there in the harbour.
Wayne had wanted to go to the 200th Anniversary re-enactment of the Battle of Waterloo, set on the original battle field, hence the timing of this trip.
After the Waterloo event, we went on a day trip to Bruges, one of the prettiest cities with beautiful old buildings and horse drawn carriages over the cobblestones that visitors can ride in to see the city. We had a lovely tour on the canals in the sunshine.
After the FoS, we went to Henley for a quiet night before the long trek home and spent the day in Windsor, where we took a lovely boat trip from Windsor, past the Eton School playing fields and the Windsor Race track to the next lock.
Few things could beat a sunny day on a boat on the Thames passing the old wooden boats and the historic bridges along with the narrow boats of people who live on the canals. The trip home does not get any easier but it was well worth the effort for such a wonderful four weeks.
Definitely to be added to your Bucket List!
Pan American Highway in Classic MGs.
This report was in the December/ January Gold Coast Time Machine Magazine - sent in by Mike Greenwood. (click here to read article.)
It involves one of our MGCC members who does not like the limelight, his name is Peter Carthy and he was one of the 7 couples who drove their MGB’s from Cape Town in South Africa all the way through Africa and ended up at Abingdon. They were under the general leadership of Dave Godwin from the MG Car Club of the Gold Coast Queensland. Dave and his wife Laural were in Adelaide some time ago in their MGA with a trailer in the shape of a coffin, the Rego is RIP and definitely does not stand for Rest in Peace and they will hope to travel some 33,000 Kms to reach Canada by May next!.
I spoke to Peter Carthy yesterday and he mentioned that he and wife Wendy will be leaving for Sandiago in Chile next Monday. Their MGB roadster has been fully prepared and is about to be unloaded together with the other four MGB Roadsters and the Two MGB/GT’s and Peters MGA. Peter is a very good mechanic who prepares his car for the events very well knowing what they will experience over the next four and a half months.
To get a good lead in to the whole trip, and it is necessary to register on the BLOG and then you can be sent all the updates by one of the party Ian McCleve.
The blog address is : http://mccleavemg.com/
Follow travels on NAMGAR - North American MGA Regsiter,
TARGA TOUR 2013
The MG Car club was again invited to participate in this years Targa Adelaide in the Shannons Tour section.
The Wednesday night prologue stage at Wayville required scrutiny and documentation in the afternoon and after the usual bit of disorganised chaos we were finally arranged in the larger Jubilee Pavilion where the cars are displayed for the public to admire. Adrian Ward also arranged a Car club display in the Atrium including Bill Schapel's MG TC race car.
The weather on the Wednesday was less than perfect with rain throughout most of the day making the course a bit slippery particularly on the clay paved sections. After a bit of a delay we finally got out on course for our 2 laps but were unfortunately also grouped with the other Tour cars making too large a group on course at once.
This meant a spirited but controlled first lap but a procession on the next as the cars all bunched up. Everyone had a trouble free run although I did hear that Jason had a bit of a problem with disobedient rear tyres (you know that ones that are sick of coming second and want to lead for a while) Anyway a good night was had and a crowd of about 15000 came out which wasn't too bad considering the conditions.
Saturday consisted of 8 closed road stages totalling about 70km with a further 200km of transport touring between stages and after an early morning drivers briefing at Wayville we were told by the rally commander to behave ourselves and be cautious in the wet conditions with Dick Manning to be our Tour leader.
First stage at Castambul saw Maurice have some fuel starvation issues with the B not running on song, but with the help of other members the carburettor bowls were cleaned and floats roughly adjusted and they made the start line JUST in time. The first stages were run in tricky conditions with Roger testing the absorbance of the rubber nose B on an Armco barrier (you didn't hear that Dick) and at 5KM into the first stage a BMW just ahead of me was lying on its side in the creek on the bottom of the Corkscrew road. After being told to behave by the Rally commander only an hour or so before we were hoping this didn't put a damper on the day and they slow us down but we didn't mention it and nor did they.
As the day progressed the roads dried and the stages got a bit quicker and we re-shuffled our group with the quicker cars moving forward in the pack, all except for Maurice who this time got a flat tyre but after a quick tyre change (30 sec I was told!!) thanks to the knock off wheels, he was back with the group. Allan Semmler also started to experience some problems with the Twin Cam not running right which turned out to be a loose bolt holding the Distributor, but with a bit of ingenuity, a rag was stuffed down tightly between the Distributor and inner guard to hold it in place. A good effort considering the car didn't have an engine in it a week before. At the end of the day all our cars finished the event, a great effort considering some of the cars are 40- 50 + years old.
The event certainly lived up to its promise of spirited driving on some fantastic closed roads. I had some great runs on the closed stages and got my car into 5th gear on the Stirling stage with 150+ on the speedo (again you didn't hear that Dick) with several appreciative comments from my co-driver along the way. If you went by the smiles on people's faces when they finished the stages you know all had a good time. Tyson made the comment that this was the most FUN he had ever had in the MG F race car.
Thanks to all the entrants for making it a very enjoyable event, also thanks to Dick Manning for organising the Tour group and lets hope we get the opportunity to do it again next year.
Driver / Navigator Car
John Davies/Scott Stephenson Mazda 6 MPS
NZ RALLY REALLY ROCKS!
It seems ironic, for Adelaide attendees at MG National Events in 2013, there were more people from our city in March who went to the biennial Pre-56 MG in New Zealand than trekked north to Toowoomba for Queensland’s Easter NatMeet.
Jetting across the Tasman, we had Shelley and Bob Bazzica, Daphne and Barry Bahnisch, Wendy and Moss Upton, plus David McNabb, following the tyre tracks of John Scott who trail-blazed in the early 1990s and confirmed how great these NZ Rallies were. The late Scotty was there in spirit, as his current MGJ2 custodians (Bazzica’s) can confirm!
The Kiwis sure punch above their weight, with nearly 90 MGs and over 200 people participating. Since the first of these Rallies, eligible cars now include MGAs and Magnettes - and McNabb felt “right at home”, as he was Chairman of the organising committee for the inaugural Rally in 1977.
Auckland’s John Hancock (aka the Director of Happiness) was Rally Chairman and had his impressive green MG K-type entered. The entry list included three MGA twin-cams, a couple of MGA De-luxe roadsters, 10 MGTDs, 16 MGTFs, plus a good selection of M, J, P, L C-type models and around a dozen of the big S,V,W saloons and dropheads.
NZ stalwart Gary Wall from Martinborough has a huge collection of the S,V,W models and a few of the overseas visitors bor-rowed some of Gary’s cars to enter the Rally. Wendy Upton was able to navigate for the Trial in style, occupying a large WA drophead’s spacious back seat.
Held in brilliant weather, the concours judging took the for-mat where you marked all other cars in your class except your own – this seemed to work well. McNabb managed a class win with his borrowed MGTD – a magnificent recent restoration which finished as runner-up in the overall category.
It’s not often that MGTAs and TBs outnumber MGTCs at an event, but with around eight TA and TB (Tickford) present, that was the case at Taupo. One of the TCs, owned by Bob Douglas and driven by our own Bazz, was named the Happy Wanderer. This car had been effectively modified for touring across several world continents, in similar style to Perth punter Harry Pyle’s TC a few years ago.
During the days following the Concours, there were the compulsory social events, and “Scatter Rally” which is a trial involving clues given as map coordinates, and you could work out the supposed best way around the route without too much doubling back. A time limit kept things in perspective but also allowed time for some sight-seeing along the way, taking in the lovely NZ scenery.
The speed event was labelled an Autocross – basically a bent sprint at the local sealed racetrack during the morning, and after lunch the same venue hosted the motorkhana. Four courses were run, and would have been on grass but the North Island’s drought conditions forced switching to the bitumen. Even the pre-wars tackled these events with great gusto.
The venue for Wednesday evening’s closing prize presentation dinner/dance was superb, with the lovely decorations including four of the concours class winners either side of the dance floor. Bazz chose to sit at McNabb’s table, so he could “translate” the Kiwi-speak, as David is familiar with the local lingo!
A keen lady from Adelaide’s Sister City of Christchurch, Ollie Reid in her TD, won the coveted overall Ladies Award and it was fun, hearing the chants of “ollie ollie oi oi oi” to the tune of aussie aussie oi oi etc!! An exceptionally sumptuous Farewell Breakfast for the survivors next morn-ing rounded out a very enjoyable and well organized Rally. With the ex-change rate in our favour, you should consider checking out the next of these kiwi events – in 2015. Just ask Bazz, Barry or Moss!
ADELAIDE REPRESENTED AT NZ MG RALLY
Seven MG Club members from Adelaide flew to New Zealand mid March for the 19th National Pre-56 MG Rally - held every two years and alternating between North and South Islands, this year's event was based in picturesque Taupo, right beside the Lake. Flying in from Adelaide we had Daphne & Barry Bahnish, Shelley & Bob Bazzica, Wendy & Moss Upton, and David McNabb, the latter returning to his homeland, keen to check out another of these well supported events. David was involved in the first of these Rallies, being chairman of the organising committee, back in 1977.
There were three Twin Cam MGAs, an MG K-type, C-type Montlhery Midget, a selection of M, J and P types, plus a vast range of SVW cars including a huge WA drophead.