Clas­sic SKOPE En­thralls Spec­ta­tors

New Zealand Classic Car - - Nationwide News - Words: Benjamin Car­rell Pho­tos: Euan Cameron

Spec­ta­tors and en­thu­si­asts en­joyed yet an­other great SKOPE Clas­sic meet­ing at Mike Pero Mo­tor­sport Park in Christchurch in early Fe­bru­ary. Many turned out in the glo­ri­ous sum­mer sun­shine to watch over 250 his­toric and clas­sic race cars com­pet­ing from all around New Zealand.

Sev­eral per­for­mances stood out over Wai­tangi week­end. Among th­ese was lo­cal driver Brent Collins who dom­i­nated the PKMC Main­land Mus­cle Cars. Driv­ing his ex Don Grindley V6 Buick– pow­ered Mazda RX-7, Collins won three of the four races in the class as well as the an­nual Sir Robert Ste­wart Grand Prix In­vi­ta­tion.

“For­tu­nately for me, I qual­i­fied on pole,” com­mented Collins. “We had two wins on Satur­day and I was priv­i­leged to have been in­vited to run in the Sir Robert Ste­wart Me­mo­rial Grand Prix.”

“On Sun­day we were off the rear of the hand­i­cap grid and I was go­ing very well when the left rear broke its wheel studs and I lost the wheel. Then in the last lap I again started off the back of the grid with a 50 sec­ond hand­i­cap. I was able to get through the field and just win de­spite a prob­lem with the gear box.”

Class spon­sor Paul Kelly com­peted in his newly–built 1970 Pon­tiac Trans Am 6.5-litre with some good re­sults in­clud­ing two podi­ums.

The Mur­ray Maxwell Vin­tage Car Club class played hosts to For­mula Ju­nior with a num­ber of en­trants vis­it­ing from Australia and the UK. Among those was Ray Mal­lock who went on to win three of the four races, fin­ish­ing sec­ond in the other. His ve­hi­cle of choice was, of course, a Mal­lock man­u­fac­tured by his fam­ily’s com­pany, a 1960 U2 Mk2 in Bri­tish rac­ing green. This was a stand-out ma­chine in both orig­i­nal­ity and speed.

Win­ning Ways

Also on the podium were Aus­tralian Neil Mccrud­den (Lo­tus 20/22 For­mula Ju­nior) who won the first race, John Rap­ley (1962 Brab­ham BT2), Eng­land’s David Innes (1963 Lo­tus 23) and Christchurch’s own Rob Cope-wil­liams (1962 Wilco Lo­tus 23).

Doug Price (1984 FF Con­ti­nen­tal Rey­nard) won three of the five Pat Hoare For­mula Li­bre races with Martin Bul­lock (1976 Chevron B34/39) win­ning the other two.

While Steve Ross (1973 Mcrae GM2) dom­i­nated and won all three MSC F5000 Se­ries races it was Ro­torua’s Brett Wil­lis (1973 Lola T330) who won the Stan Red­mond Me­mo­rial Tro­phy af­ter a su­perb drive to sec­ond in the 12–lap fea­ture race.

“It was cer­tainly a great way to fin­ish the week­end, and great for the team,” com­mented Wil­lis.

The tro­phy is awarded to the MSC se­ries driver who puts in the most spir­ited per­for­mance at the SKOPE Clas­sic meet­ing and the popular choice this year was Wil­lis who worked his way from sev­enth spot on the grid to sec­ond at the flag.

The pre- 65 com­pe­ti­tion was a friendly clash be­tween North and South Is­land driv­ers. John Michelle (Ford Cortina Mk 1), Wayne Pa­trick (Ford Fal­con XP), John Smolen­ski (Ford Fal­con XP) and Keith Macdon­ald (Chev Nova) all won a race each.

Mur­ray Sin­clair (1970 Chevron B16) won both Satur­day’s races in the Stan­ton Broth­ers’ Sports and GTS class. Guy Ste­wart (1991 Porsche GT2) fin­ished on the podium three times in­clud­ing win­ning the race on Sun­day morn­ing while Hugh Jolliffe (1972 Dat­sun 240Z) won the fi­nal five lap­per. An­gus Cock­ram in his newly–ac­quired 1985 Porsche 944 GTR gained three podi­ums.

Ar­ron Black dom­i­nated the Ron Sil­vester Sa­loons & His­toric Clas­sics in his 1989 BMW E30 M3 with two wins and two third places. Brett Stevens (1991 Ford Sierra Cos­worth Group A) and Stephen Grel­let (1991 BMW E30 M3) each had a win.

In the Harold Heasley Sa­loons, Grant Constable (1978 Hill­man Avenger) won two races. Ian Wil­liamson (Mazda RX2) and An­drew Downs also each won a race.

The week­end was taken as an op­por­tu­nity to farewell Eion Young with the scat­ter­ing of his ashes on Satur­day af­ter­noon.

On dis­play for this meet was the newly com­pleted 1962 Fer­rari 250 GTO Fer­rari replica built by Oa­maru’s Rod Tem­pero, now owned by a Christchurch cus­tomer. The very sleek and stun­ningly stylish Fer­rari was put through its paces with a num­ber of demon­stra­tion laps.

Of­fi­cials, vol­un­teers and the Can­ter­bury Car Club are to be con­grat­u­lated for an­other suc­cess­ful SKOPE Clas­sic. Many sun­burnt en­thu­si­asts will now look for­ward to 2016.

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