GRACE … SPACE … PACE x 2

WI TH TH E H I GH E S T T E AMS E V ENT S COR E E V E R ACHI E V E D IN THE 4 4 Y E A R S O F THE ELLER­SLIE CLAS­SIC C A R SHOW, THE S E TWO MAGNI F I C E N T E - T Y P E S HAV E S E T A N EW P R ECE D E N T

New Zealand Classic Car - - Report - Pho­tos:

The Teams Event com­pe­ti­tion at the Eller­slie Clas­sic Car Show is hotly con­tested ev­ery year. Any car club can en­ter two of its finest cars to com­pete against other clubs, and, for those keen enough, there’s pro­vi­sion to en­ter more than one team at the or­ga­niz­ing com­mit­tee’s dis­cre­tion. This has been ev­i­dent in the last few years, with the Auck­land Mus­tang Own­ers Club going to great lengths to en­ter two teams and hav­ing great suc­cess.

The Eller­slie Clas­sic Car Show 2017 saw three mag­nif­i­cently pre­sented teams from two car clubs en­ter: one from the Auck­land Jaguar Driv­ers Club and two from the Auck­land Mus­tang Own­ers Club. The stakes are high — the right to host the fol­low­ing year’s event, the right to have two club mem­bers present on the or­ga­niz­ing com­mit­tee, and a larger per­cent­age of the gate tak­ings. But this com­pe­ti­tion is more than that, it’s about club pride, and the sat­is­fac­tion of pre­sent­ing two cars against the rest is what keeps car clubs pre­sent­ing teams ev­ery year.

With two teams en­tered again in this year’s event, the Auck­land Mus­tang Own­ers Club was no doubt keen for vic­tory af­ter last year’s loss to the Porsche Club of New Zealand, rep­re­sented by David Mack­rell’s mag­nif­i­cent Porsche 356 and Dean Hus­ton’s award­win­ning Porsche 911, which gained a to­tal com­bined score of 1056 points out of a pos­si­ble 1180.

How­ever, one club put paid to that no­tion by win­ning with the high­est to­tal com­bined score of

1109 points — the Auck­land Jaguar Driv­ers Club tak­ing the 2017 crown thanks to two stun­ning E-type Jaguars, one owned by last year’s Mas­ters Class win­ner Si­mon Crispe and the other by Roger Munns. Not only were they vic­to­ri­ous team win­ners, but Si­mon’s glo­ri­ous 1961 E-type OTS was the high­est-scor­ing car of the day, in­clud­ing Mas­ters Class, with an in­di­vid­ual score of 565 points out of a to­tal 590.

Si­mon also took out the highly prized Mas­ters Class com­pe­ti­tion with his beautifully re­stored 1961 Daim­ler SP250 Dart (as fea­tured in Is­sue No. 307, July 2016), with a to­tal score of 538 points.

Si­mon Crispe — 1961 Jaguar E-type OTS

Si­mon Crispe pur­chased his 1961 Jaguar E-type OTS in In­verkeilor, Scot­land, on Septem­ber 4, 2009. He dis­cov­ered that this fab­u­lous ex­am­ple is one of the old­est re­main­ing cars, pos­si­bly one of the ear­li­est 12 known cars in ex­is­tence, mak­ing it a very rare cat in­deed.

His very early E-type road­ster, fin­ished in Jaguar Cream with red leather in­te­rior, was built at Browns Lane in Coven­try on April 27, 1961. E-type num­ber 29 rolled out of the Jaguar fac­tory ex­actly six weeks, to the day, af­ter the iconic E-type’s March 16 launch to the world in Geneva. By that fa­mous launch date, just a hand­ful of E-types had been built, and, by the end of April 1961, only a very few more had seen the light of day. It was a slow be­gin­ning, while the fac­tory worked out ex­actly how to make these cars. By the end of pro­duc­tion, 72,500 E-types had been built over 14 years.

Si­mon soon came to the con­clu­sion that his new ac­qui­si­tion needed to be re­stored care­fully and sen­si­tively, with orig­i­nal­ity the key but with­out over-restor­ing.

He stripped the car down in his air-con­di­tioned garage in Dubai — it needed to be air con­di­tioned so he had a chance of sur­viv­ing while strip­ping down an old, di­lap­i­dated Jaguar in the 50°C sum­mer heat. Si­mon was care­ful to la­bel ab­so­lutely ev­ery­thing and took plenty of pho­to­graphs, know­ing that his mem­ory would not help at all a year or two later when re­assem­bling the car.

By the end of 2013, it was ready, war­ranted and driv­able, but it lacked an in­te­rior, its soft-top, and the fi­nal paint­ing of the ex­ter­nal pan­els for con­cours-ready pre­sen­ta­tion. Si­mon de­cided to send the E-type to the UK for very ex­act fin­ish­ing by a mar­que spe­cial­ist in the ear­li­est cars — Clas­sic Mo­tor Cars (known as ‘CMC’).

The car was shipped from Dubai late in October 2015 and ar­rived in per­fect time for his el­dest daugh­ter’s wed­ding. It was first dis­played at the Eller­slie Clas­sic Car Show 2015, and was the Mas­ters Class win­ner in 2016 (as fea­tured in Is­sue No. 304, April 2016). This year, he was once again vic­to­ri­ous in the Teams Event, along with fel­low team-mem­ber Roger Munns.

Once the body was per­fect, it was sent to Golden Gun Panel­beat­ers and Spray­painters for the ap­pli­ca­tion of the orig­i­nal Opales­cent Sil­ver Grey colour scheme. In the mean­time, Roger and a few mates were busily re­fur­bish­ing many of the orig­i­nal items that would even­tu­ally end up back on the car, in­clud­ing ev­ery orig­i­nal nut and bolt, all of which were metic­u­lously cleaned. The orig­i­nal gear­box and dif­fer­en­tial were in ex­cel­lent con­di­tion, so Roger de­cided to re­fur­bish the out­side only, while the sus­pen­sion and brakes were com­pletely re­built back to orig­i­nal spec­i­fi­ca­tions.

The next step was the in­te­rior. Roger im­ported three Con­nolly leather hides from the UK in the orig­i­nal Jaguar Red colour, which the team at Stu’s Trim and Sound skil­fully fit­ted to the seats and other parts of the in­te­rior. Rigg Elec­tro­plat­ing added the ex­tra sparkle to the ex­te­rior, along with a new set of com­pe­ti­tion wire wheels as the fin­ish­ing touch.

Af­ter nine long years, Roger’s mas­ter­piece was com­plete and ready for the Eller­slie Clas­sic Car Show 2016 Mas­ters Class com­pe­ti­tion, in which he placed third with a to­tal score of 533 points out of a pos­si­ble 590. Af­ter spend­ing the year im­prov­ing the car, Roger de­cided to en­ter the cov­eted Teams Event with fel­low club mem­ber Si­mon Crispe. Once the fi­nal re­sults were tal­lied up, the pair had raised the bar to new heights with the un­prece­dented afore­men­tioned 1109 points.

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