Time Tun­nel

New Zealand Classic Car - - Editorial -

While fos­sick­ing through the mag­a­zine’s ex­ten­sive — and, alas, largely dis­or­ga­nized ar­chives — in prepa­ra­tion for the up­com­ing Vol­ume Three of our Clas­sic Cars of New Zealand book se­ries, I hap­pened across all man­ner of forgotten pho­to­graphs and mo­tor­ing me­mora­bilia. And let me as­sure you, with over twenty years be­hind us, there’s a mas­sive amount of ma­te­rial on file. One day, when I fi­nally re­tire from edit­ing the mag­a­zine full-time, per­haps I’ll get the chance to dig into the ar­chives and in­dex ev­ery­thing so it can be eas­ily found when­ever re­quired.

A daunt­ing task but it can be done. My friend — mo­tor-rac­ing pho­tog­ra­pher ex­traor­di­naire Terry Mar­shall — has a great archival sys­tem. When I drop him a line look­ing for spe­cific images, if he’s got them they’re usu­ally in my mail­box within a few hours. Such ef­fi­ciency!


All that search­ing through the mag­a­zine’s ar­chives also led me to risk a quick dig through my own per­sonal stuff. There was no real rea­son be­hind such an arche­o­log­i­cal dig — with a lit­tle time on my hands, it was just a chance to dredge up a few old mo­tor­ing mem­o­ries.

Along the way I was hop­ing to un­earth a few pho­tos of the cream Mercedes 300SL Gull­wing that had once graced the Win­ners’ Cir­cle at Eller­slie; at that time the car was owned by Auck­land ar­chi­tect, Stu­art Mccon­dach.

Alas, no luck — but I did turn up an im­age of the Gull­wing owned by South­ward Mo­tor Mu­seum. It’s in­ter­est­ing to see that mu­seum staff had placed the Mercedes along­side a rather more mod­ern gull-winged car, a Delorean DMC12. Coin­ci­den­tally, I snapped this photo al­most ex­actly 20 years ago in March 1995.

Re­mem­ber­ing the ’80s

Men­tion of Eller­slie brings me more up-to-date with a brief men­tion of our in­clu­sion in this month’s fea­ture of the stunning brace of As­ton Martin DB2/4S that took part in the Teams Event at this year’s Intermarque Con­cours.

Although the As­tons didn’t win (that hon­our go­ing to a pair of Porsches), their ap­pear­ance in the Win­ners’ Cir­cle re­minded me of the Intermarque’s ear­lier days — my first visit to the show be­ing 1981. At that time, the event catered al­most ex­clu­sively for Bri­tish and Euro­pean clas­sic cars — as well, this was a time when New Zealand didn’t even have a na­tional clas­sic car mag­a­zine and, by and large, only car club mem­bers and true en­thu­si­asts were even aware of the event. A bit elit­ist, per­haps, but this was the ’80s! The way it used to be is re­flected in a pho­to­graph show­ing a line-up of Fer­raris (with a Jaguar XK120 pok­ing its shapely snout into the top left) that I took at Eller­slie in Fe­bru­ary 1983.

For me, see­ing a pair of As­tons in the Win­ners’ Cir­cle — ably backed up by An­gus Rob­son’s gor­geous DB5 ‘sur­vivor’ — was akin to step­ping into a time tun­nel and trav­el­ing back to the ’80s.

For me, that was mo­ti­va­tion enough to plan a fea­ture on the DB2/4S to back up the story be­hind this month’s cover three-pointed star.

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