Cromwell Hot Rod & Classic Car Show
The quality and presentation of vehicles gathered together at Cromwell for this year’s Classic and Hot Rod Show — and those parked around the surrounding streets of the Cromwell Domain — were testament to this outstandingly successful annual event, hosted by the Southland Ford Falcon Club.
Club secretary, Tena Mccarthy, reported a new record turnout of 746 cars past the gate for the event. It would be interesting to take a tally of all vehicles which made it to Cromwell for the day — numbers must have been well over 1000.
Trade and food stalls were in abundance this year, with again great local support and an ideal setting. Local police pitched in and helped get everyone away safely out of the venue at the conclusion, but many decided to stay on and enjoy a barbecue in the hot conditions.
Amongst the numerous awards presented at the show, the People’s Choice Award is always hotly contested. This year Diane and Roger Whyte of Dacre, just north of Invercargill and winners of the award in 2014, were again the recipients. It was another first for the show, as a back-to-back winner has not occurred before with the same vehicle.
“It’s a bit humbling to receive this again this year for the second time with so many great cars here to choose from. We’re very happy to get this,” an overwhelmed Roger Whyte said as he accepted the trophy.
Roger did most of the work on his 1978 Ford Falcon VC panel van himself, except for some panel-work and the painting. The Falcon was accompanied by its ‘little brother’ for the rest of the family to travel in — an equally well-prepared 1980 Ford Escort MKII panel van.
Another Falcon that received lots of attention from show-goers was the barn-find car owned by Karen and Donald Ramsey, of Gore. They purchased their Ford Falcon about 18 months ago when they spotted it at a Milton panel shop. “It was really rough and painted purple but it was all there. I decided to buy it because the old black plates start with my initials,” Donald said. Known for his panel skills, Donald soon had the car looking great in its now vivid-yellow paint scheme with black speed stripes.
Pukekohe Hot Rod Club member Brian Simpkins turned up at Cromwell with an immaculate 1958 Chevrolet Impala, which was not only impressive on the outside and inside. “I was talking to a mate a week before we came to the show and he asked me what I was doing. I told him I was touching up the paint on the Chevrolet. He told me it didn’t need it, and I said no, it’s the underside I’m touching up. Come around and give me a hand,” he quipped.
Sure enough, a quick check underneath showed it as clean as a whistle!
With temperatures in the 30s leading up to the show the weather was as hot as the cars on display, once again a great event.