South­land fling

48th Ar­row­town Motorcycle Run

Old Bike Australasia - - RALLY REPORTS - Re­port and pho­tos Stu­art Fran­cis

15 Novem­ber, 2014 – Ar­row­town, New Zealand

The South­land branch of the Vin­tage Car Club of NZ or­gan­ises a great run each year from Lums­den (80km north of In­ver­cargill) to Ar­row­town in Otago (an his­toric Gold min­ing set­tle­ment). The early runs, from all ac­counts, seemed to be an ex­cuse to visit ev­ery pub and ho­tel on the 140km run, how­ever things have changed. Many of the pubs have gone, the road has been im­proved, traf­fic vol­ume has in­creased and a num­ber of ma­chines, now el­i­gi­ble, weren’t even built 47 years ago. The run has evolved to ac­com­mo­date th­ese changes, the veteran and vin­tage ma­chines still take the di­rect route to Ar­row­town, but the more mod­ern ma­chines take a long de­tour out to Moss­burn be­fore meet­ing up with the older ma­chines for lunch, at the Kingston Golf Club, at the bot­tom of Lake Wakatipu. The route then runs up the side of Lake Wakatipu, along a 30km stretch called the “Devil’s Stair­case”, a very twisty and un­du­lat­ing piece of road cut into the lakeside cliff face, which is a real chal­lenge on a belt drive Veteran or early Vin­tage ma­chine. De­spite a howl­ing gale there were 35 ma­chines on the run, with a good spread of ages, 1918 to 1981, and a good range of makes from Ariel to Yamaha. Tri­umphs were the most popular with AJS/Match­less a close sec­ond. Un­usu­ally there was only one belt drive Veteran this year, Brad McLeod on his 1918 Tri­umph. How­ever there were a good num­ber of Vin­tage ma­chines in­clud­ing, a “barn find” 1925 In­dian Prince, a re­cently re­stored 1929 CO Tri­umph, two Model 9 Sun­beams, a Hen­der­son 4, a 1926 Rudge and an 1928 Ariel Model G. No ma­chines broke down on the run and Tony War­ren joined the rally at lunch time when his 1928 BSA Model L de­cided to fire up, hav­ing re­fused to at the start. The run fin­ished in Ar­row­town with field tests, novel ways of em­bar­rass­ing the com­peti­tors, and a quiz to gauge their ig­no­rance of motorcycle his­tory. The evening drinks and bar­beque were, as cus­tom­ary, in the lo­cal fire sta­tion; sev­eral rid­ers were feel­ing no pain by the end of the evening! The prize giv­ing was on Sun­day morn­ing with the snow-capped “Re­mark­ables” Moun­tain Range as a stun­ning back­drop. Over­all Win­ner was Colin Bishop on his 1955 VH Ariel, Best Restora­tion went to Stu­art Rus­sell’s 1929 CO Tri­umph and the Pub­li­can’s Choice was Graeme Wil­liam’s 1925 Hen­der­son 4.

LEFT Robin Barnes sets off on his 1929 Model 9 Sun­beam. ABOVE The only belt drive en­tered; Brad McLeod’s 1918 Tri­umph. RIGHT Wayne Calder­wood with his 1965 YDS3 Yamaha.

Newspapers in English

Newspapers from Australia

© PressReader. All rights reserved.