North Canterbury Classic Tour
Canterbury, like most of New Zealand, enjoyed a magnificent summer, so it was disappointing come the day of this event to wake up to light drizzle.
However, in spite of the dull weather, on Sunday, March 22, 112 classics entered the 13th annual North Canterbury Classic Tour — an event run by my grandparents, Trevor and Lorraine Stanley-joblin. As a result, these Sundays in March have always been a memorable part of my life growing up, and I’ve helped with the organization of this event for eight years.
The NCCT always attracts a mixture of young and old enthusiasts alike, travelling from far and wide to attend. Lindsay Mckenzie drove up from Oamaru in his 1947 Plymouth coupé for the day, and the first to arrive at 9.15am was a gentleman from Auckland touring the South Island in his Lotus.
There are always those cheeky drivers who turn up at the last minute, and this year was no exception — one of our regular entrants, an Alfa Romeo signwritten ‘Polizia Squadra Volante’, arrived just in the nick of time.
This year the classics ranged from two little early ’50s Renault 750s right through to the very latest Corvette.
As well as many regulars on these events, there were a few first timers — such as Carol Kavanagh, driving her recently acquired Mazda MX-5 S1. She was having a ball, and was very pleased with her ‘new’ sports car, which my aunty was navigating. They both enjoyed the tour immensely, and are now looking forward to the North Canterbury Classic Tour Christmas Picnic coming up in November — for that one they plan to drive their own MX-5S, coincidentally they’re both red.
The tour once again was a real family affair for my family. Uncle Paul travelled in his Porsche Boxster, with Nana and Grandad in their MX-5 S2.
We departed from the event sponsor’s premises, Russley Portables, in Wairakei Road, with the first vehicle flagged away at 10.30am. Within minutes of leaving, the tour led entrants on a drive through the upmarket suburb of Northwood where, as a result of an extensive letterbox drop, hundreds of residents were outside watching the parade and waving them on. The route then took them through Clarkville, Mandeville, Ohoka and Southbrook to Rangiora. It was here that the morning section highlight took place — a drive through the over-55 complex of Northbrook Villas in Rangiora. On arrival, the tour members were greeted and cheered on by the residents, many of whom had dressed up in period costume.
From Rangiora the tour continued through the country, to end up in the small seaside village of Waikuku for the official lunch break. During this twohour stop there was the opportunity to walk around to check out what other people had brought out of the garage for the day, while Phil and Colin once again entertained drivers and passengers by playing songs and music from the ’60s and ’70s.
After lunch the drive took everyone on beautiful scenic routes through Loburn, Ashley and Sefton to Leithfield, ending with a visit to Bains Classic Cars and the building of the late Gary Mcvicar (G Mcvicar & Co Motor Garage). We dedicated this year’s tour to Gary, as he was an inspiration to many, building up a collection of classic cars from a young age. Gary passed away on November 21, 2014, only two years after establishing this building to house all his cars next to the café he built.
Many people finished their day relaxing with a cup of tea or coffee in the café before heading home and looking forward to their next summer outing.
Thanks again to Stewarts Classic Cars and Parkside Media for sponsoring this event.
A date for your diary — this year’s Christmas Picnic, sponsored by Parkside Media and Nzclassiccar, is scheduled to take place on Sunday, November 22, 2015, starting at 10am and departing from Amberley St Johns Ambulance HQ beside the Hurunui District Council SH1, Amberley, North Canterbury.