It was a crazy, demanding yet fun filled two weeks filled with cars, bikes and racing heroes. It all started Zwartkops on 1 February with a rare outing of the museum’s ex-John Love Team Gunston Chevron B25 racing car – coincidentally marking FMM’s first visit to the Gauteng circuit. Workshop manager Lorenzo Farella and I made the long journey up to Pretoria to present the car in a five-lap tribute parade to the world’s oldest branded racing team. Yes, Team Gunston made its appearance on the 1 December 1967 at an event held in Bulawayo just before the Rhodesian GP. This momentus step in advertising history taken by Dr. Anton Rupert would change motor sport forever and racing cars would never look the same again.
Team Gunston was a well-supported team over the years and even today it carries tremendous support as was seen by the number of supporters that appeared up in Pretoria. These gents remember drivers and champions like Love, Ian Scheckter, Sam Tingle, Bob Olthoff, Eddie Keizan, Andew Thompson and Paul Hawkins.
After our weekend up in Gauteng it was back home for the Killarney leg of the Passion for Speed series – no parade laps were performed at the Cape Town circuit but Lorenzo did fire-up the car in the pits where the B25 was on display along with a number of other fine ‘wings and slicks’ cars, which are always so impressive to see running.
It was a great privilege and an absolute honour to have been able to present this car and share fitting tribute to a golden era in motor sport. WH
A BEEMER-ING QUEEN’S PLATE
Just as in the past, FMM was on display at the L’Ormarins Queen’s Plate run at Kenilworth race course in January. However, this year was the first time BMW was on board as sponsor partners and allowed us the opportunity to display a few of the BMWs in our collection. On display we had the 1938 BMW 328 roadster, the 1953 BMW 503, the ex-Madiba 46664 charity 750iL and the BMW-powered McLaren F1, which was a real show stopper. Then just for the anoraks, we had a 1926 Austin 7 (also build as a Dixi under license) which was the car BMW based its first 3/15 model on back in 1929. Oh yes, there was some rather excellent horse racing – and many fashionistas – on view as well…
The L’Ormarins Queens Plate is one of the horse racing world’s premier events and gets better every year. We look forward to being invited back again next year. WH
THE HILLS ARE ALIVE – AGAIN
Following last year’s non-event in the wake of Renault’s withdrawal of support, Jaguar has stepped in and signed-up as headline sponsor for the annual Knysna hillclimb for the next three years. No titled the Jaguar Simola Hillclimb, the event is once again earmarked to be the highlight of the year for Garden Route motoring enthusiasts and prove to be a powerful magnet for motor sport competitors and fans throughout South Africa.
The event takes place from 16th to 18th May on the challenging two-kilometre hill up to the Simola Golf and Country Estate and will again include the popular Classic Car Friday, followed by Saturday’s practice and qualifying runs for the eagerly anticipated King of the Hill feature event on Sunday.
Cars eligible for the Classic Car Friday event will fall into six classes: pre-war cars will compete in Class H1, pre-1966 road cars in H2 and pre-1975 road cars in H3. Pre-’66 and ’75 pukka racing machinery will be in classes H4 and H5 repectively. Re-created cars, often mistakenly called ‘replicas’, will fill Class H6. Spectators and drivers attending Classic Car Friday are encouraged to wear period dress to help create a true historic race meeting atmosphere. The organisers are offering prizes for the best-dressed male and female spectators on the day. The modern big guns fall into a variety of classes which cater both for standard road cars to 750kW to purpose-built hillclimb specials.
In order to keep the event manageable, only 50 entries will be accepted for Classic Car Friday and 80 cars will be accommodated for the feature King of the Hill event.
For those of you who have not already seen it, in the February/March edition of Classic & Performance Car Africa magazine there is a feature on FMM’s ex-Greyvensteyn 1958 Ford Country Sedan Station Wagon and – blow the trumpets – a driving report on the museum’s Peugeot hillclimb special that was recently unveiled after a ground-up restoration. MM