Canterbury Branch Vintage Car Club Restoration of the Year
Words and photos: Trevor Stanley-joblin
The 2016 Restoration of the Year judging was conducted on Sunday, June 12 in front of the clubrooms at Cutler Park, Mcleans Island, Christchurch, as has been the tradition for several decades now — I can recall having my maroon 1947 Ford Mercury V8 118 Town sedan judged back in about 1976.
This year, only three vehicles were submitted for judging. The youngest was a 1981 Triumph TR7 sports car. Lynn Scott has owned this for the past seven years or so but only during the past year has he given it a full restoration. Like Lynn’s previous restoration, a 1934 Chevrolet three-window coupe, the TR7 has been done to a very high standard.
Next, we had Jeff Tanner’s 1973 Range Rover. An interesting point here is the fact that, somehow, when it was registered new in December of ’ 73, it was designated as a Ford Range Rover! Probably a simple clerical mistake by the Post Office clerk, but the NZ Transport Agency will not rectify it. Jeff noticed the Rover for sale on the roadside, opposite the old established timber/joiner company of Hardie and Thomson Ltd, in Colombo Street, Christchurch. Now one of the oldest companies in Christchurch, dating back to 1908, it still operates from its original address, and even today, after 108 years, is owned and operated by descendants of Mr William Thomson. When Mr Thomson Junior passed away, this all-original Range Rover was offered for sale by the Thomson family. Mr Thomson had purchased it new, and used it largely to go salmon fishing. One can easily believe that fact, as there is no sign of rough off-road excursions. Since purchasing it just a year ago, Jeff has done a brake overhaul (needed thanks to lack of use rather than overuse), replaced hardened rubber bushes, and changed all the oils, etc. Other than that, it’s just been a matter of detailed grooming.
Is this the most original ’ 73 Range Rover in the world? It is probably the only Ford Range Rover!
Finally, the third entry was a 1960 Goliath Hansa 1100 limousine. These are now a very rare car; it’s certainly the only restored example I have seen. A little brother to the big Borgward Isabella, these Goliaths were very well engineered for their time, with a four-cylinder horizontal-opposed engine layout (perhaps Subaru copied it?). Russell Barnard found this eight years ago in an empty section in Bishopdale, Christchurch as not much more than a bodyshell and is gratefully in debt to Dave Saunders of Bishopdale for the endless support, supply of missing parts, and mechanical knowledge and advice he passed on over the eight years of restoration. Dave has been a collector of Borgward, Goliath, and Hansa for many years and, thus, has accumulated a mass of parts for these German-made models. There is no doubt that Russell has saved this very rare classic, and New Zealand Classic Car would like to congratulate him for taking on such a difficult project. Once the final results were tallied up it was a close call, with Lynn Scott's outstanding 1981 Triumph TR7 taking out first place in the 'Post 1980' (1980-1986) class. First place in the 'Post War' class (1946-1960) went to Russell Barnard's 1960 Goliath Hansa.