NZ-Navigation Page

NZ-Original announcement (Sept. 2003)

NZ Update #1 - Preparation (Oct. 15, 2003)

NZ Update #2 - Shipping the cars (Oct. 24, 2003)

NZ Update #3 - The second container (Late November)

NZ Update #4 - A Small Glitch (December 8th)

NZ Update #5 - Cars in NZ and OK (January 9, 2004)

NZ Update #6 - Arrival in NZ (Jan. 24)

NZ Update #7 - After first race weekend (February 2)

NZ Update #8 - Levels Raceway-Timaru

NZ Update #8.5 - Touring Queenstown Area

NZ Update #9 - Teretonga Raceway in Invercargill

NZ Update #10 - Dunedin Street Race

NZ Epilogue - The Last Update (March 6, 2004)

  (Pictures at end of text. Navigation at bottom of page)

In the last update a couple of weeks ago it was suggested that not much would happen for a while. WRONG! We had our first glitch, but nothing that Team Terrific (more correctly, the "Pros From Denver") couldn't solve.

Phil Shires is in charge of arranging for, working with and tracking the containers with the shipping company. On Saturday I got the proverbial "Good News, Bad News" phone call from Phil. The Bad News?? The second container got to LA OK but the ship it was to sail on was overbooked. Yep. That's right. Just like the airlines. No space left and the result was that our "expedited" second container would arrive a month later than planned -- not until Jan30th (one day before racing begins). Not good. Terry and Paul would be very, very unhappy campers if this were to happen.

Now for the Good News. Phil, being the clever silver-tongued devil that he is, found a solution. We simply had to change carriers and put the container on another boat. Simple enough, right? Well, now for some more Bad News. The new shipper wouldn't accept the payload in the current container. Everything would have to be moved to one of THEIR containers.

Crap! Oh well, time for the "Pros From Denver" (That would be Phil and me!) to jump into action. Phil simply arranged for both the current and the new containers to be fetched from the Long Beach port to a nearby freight forwarder's depot where we'd make the switch.

But, we sure didn't want a bunch of bozos making the transfer. So, Phil used some of his travel miles and I one of Diane's passes and we hot footed it out to LA on Sunday night. At 8:00 a.m. Monday we were on the doorstep of the freight forwarder's dock, waiting for our promised containers to show up. "They're out there looking for them as we speak." we were assured. Right. It didn't look good and we had visions of spending another day in California. But, sure enough, the two trucks showed up about noon. Cool. You gotta' love it when a plan comes together!

Believe it or not, The Pros From Denver were able to unload everything and re-load it into the new container in less than three hours. Of course, this being the third time to do this, we are getting pretty damn good at it. Plus, since the containers were at a loading dock, it was easy to get stuff out of and back into the new box. Piece of cake. There was all kinds of help offered by the dock foreman, but since none of the help spoke a word of English (Other than the foreman and he didn't do any work!) we just used them to help roll cars and move some of the heavier pieces. Beyond that, Phil and I did it all just to be sure it was done to our satisfaction. Actually it all worked out very, very well.

By 3:00 we were ready to head back to the airport, none the worse for wear. Wait a minute. That's not exactly true. Just before we were ready to close the door on the newly loaded container, I realized I'd forgotten to take any pictures of our latest adventure. Drat! So I jumped off the dock to go to the car and get the camera. Oops. Fell down, went boom,  skinned my knee and bruised the palm of one hand. Ouch! But that didn’t' bother me too much. The splinter I had just gotten under one of my fingernails bothered me a lot more. Arrrgh!

Anyway, we got it all done and our stuff will now be a fast boat to NZ by Friday with delivery assured by December 30th, just a few days later than originally expected.

Whew! That was close one. Thanks to Phil's diligence, we averted a disaster and all is back on track.  There are only a couple of pictures below, but . . . you get the idea.

reloading02-finalboarding.jpg (31156 bytes)I didn't get any pictures of the unloading/reloading process.  But here Phil and our new able-bodied, but non-English speaking, dockworker friend show the final results--everything re-packed nice and tidy.  We unloaded and reloaded in reverse order of the orginal container with the Paul's spare engine and March Formula car at the front of the container and Terry's cars at the back.  It was just easier this way.  Note the dock-high loading platform.  Mucho easier!!!!

reloading01-philatairport.jpg (45109 bytes)

After finishing up at the freight docks about 3:00, we made a made dash for the hotel to clean up and then off to the airport.  We were even able to make the 5:00 flight instead of the 6:15 we'd scheduled.  Since we missed lunch, Phil gulps down a sandwich in the boarding area.  Mission accomplished. The Pros From Denver prevail!

reloading04-locking.jpg (36739 bytes)

Phil applying the ceremonial lock to the door before sending the container back down to the docks for Friday's departure (WE HOPE!).   We say "ceremonial" because if anyone really want in (e.g. the customs dudes.), they just whack it off with bolt cutters.  It was, however, good to know that the padlocks locks we put on the first container in Denver made it LA.  We cut 'em off to unload since I'd already sent the keys to Larry in NZ. 

pic12316-oops.jpg (57147 bytes)

A "friend" of ours, Pete Myers, supplied these two wonderful images along with a note saying "Have a pic03035-inthedrink.jpg (42094 bytes) nice trip".  Some friend, huh? We can only hope that our containers don't  encounter  this kind of a disaster.


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