CONVOY ALONG THE CALDER
The inaugural two-day Calder Convoy Classic Truck Run will run from Calder Park to Red Cliffs from May 19
THE SUCCESS OF EVENTS such as Crawlin’ The Hume and Haulin’ The Hume have inspired the Mildurabased Tractor Restoration and Appreciation Club of Sunraysia (TRACS) to launch the 2018 Calder Convoy Classic Truck Run.
The inaugural Calder Highway event will take place over May 19 and 20, running between Calder Park and Red Cliffs near Mildura.
Rob Mansell, one of six people the TRACS committee designated to organise the event, says the Calder Highway previous travelled through towns such as Gisborne, Woodend, Kyneton and Malmsbury.
“Market trucks especially used to run up and down the Calder Highway. A lot of them would then go north to Bendigo and Echuca or wherever,” Rob says. “The freeway now is pretty well between Melbourne and Bendigo and all the towns have been bypassed.”
Rob says the Calder Convoy Classic Truck Run will depart the BP Calder Northbound BP, near the Calder Park Thunderdome, on May 19 around 9am.
“We’ll travel through the towns that have all been cut off,” he continues.
“When we get to Charlton, around 3 or 4 in the afternoon, we’ll go to the showground where the footy club will have their bar open and they’ll put a dinner on for us that night.”
Rob says that after breakfast on the Sunday, the convoy will continue onto Red Cliffs where TRACS will put on an evening barbecue.
“We’ll perhaps do something on Monday if there are enough people, or they can turn around and go home from Charlton.”
Rob says 20 vehicles were locked in by early April, with more were expected right up until May 19.
“We’re not expecting people to get their entries in until the last minute like they usually do,” he says.
Trucks participating must be 25 years or older, although newer trucks can take part providing they’re hauling a truck in the vintage category. As for himself, Rob is planning to have more than the one truck in the convoy – a 1990 UD, a KB5 International as well as his R190 International.
“I had to take the radiator out of the R190 to get it fixed and I’m hoping to get it in,” he says. “Either way, I was going to take two trucks anyway. If I have the 190, which shouldn’t be a real issue, I’ll put my favourite trailer on the back, fully tarped with a few empty bins on it.
“And I’ll put my KB5 International on the back of the UD.”
Rob says depending on the turnout, the event could become a biennial or annual event.
Above: Rob Mansell is hoping to have his International R190 ready in time for the Calder Classic Truck Run. Photo: Peter Schlenk