NZ Update #6

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)

Our trip to Christchurch went without a hitch--space available on all the flights. Yeah! So we arrived here on Friday about noon, the 23rd, contacted Larry by phone from the airport, and went directly to the race track where he was hanging out.

As noted in Update #5, all the cars are safely tucked away at the track and in great shape. A bit dusty, but no apparent effects of the long journey. It was really nice to see them all safe and sound. Amazing.

We don't race until next week, but there was a lot of activity at the track this weekend due to major races there including a national Formula Ford race which includes four young "Yanks" here on driving scholarships. One of the kids is Brian Millen, son of Rod Millen, nephew of Steve Millen. One of the four kids, Joe D'Agestino had a BAD crash at last weekend's race and busted his arm. He is here this weekend, but hurtin' for certain and headed back to the states Tuesday. Diane and I spent some time chatting with him as we all hung around the shop. A very nice young (fast) lad. His car only had one corner left on it, had to cut him out. Ugly. John Crawford's shop is providing the cars and support for the four Yanks.

We'll watch the FF races tomorrow (Sunday) and then Monday start to worry about getting the cars prepped. We hope to get in a day of track time to learn the track, hopefully Tuesday and again on Friday when more racers will be practicing for the weekend's races.

Kay and Larry's hospitality is, of course, impeccable and most appreciated. We'll stay with them for a few days but then go to our hotel when Elaine arrives mid-next week.

Weather report. SUNNY and 75F ('twas snowing when we left Denver, ha-ha). I'm already sunburned from one afternoon at the track and today's out and about. Bought a hat today. Duh!

shawcharlie.jpg (36816 bytes)
Just after winning the afternoon race AND eking out the overall championship win, Charlie Kimbell is greeted by Jeremy Shaw. Charlie was one of three USA kids sponsored by Jeremy to participate in the NZ FF championship. Kudos to Charlie!! and kudos to Jeremy for making it happen for these kids. You my recognize Jeremy as the commentator on the Barber Dodge series on Speed Channel. He's also a vintage FF driver racing with VARA several times a year in his Mallock FF.

dibiplane.jpg (10488 bytes)Lest you think the trip is ALL about race cars, we took some time to visit a wonderful NZ Air Force Museum (admittedly not too far from the race track). Here Diane poses at a biplane diorama.

5000s.jpg (38461 bytes)

The F5000 cars start to show up in the paddock for next weekend's races (our race weekend). The F5000's didn't run this weekend, but they expect twenty of 'em next weekend. In the foreground is the black snorkel of a Lola T-332 maintained by John Crawford's shop and behind it is Larry Detrich's (Garry Tapps) T-142. I can't imagine a race of all F5000 cars. Should be something to see.

guppy.jpg (17505 bytes)This big guppy was the precursor to the Hercules transports and was used to shuttle cars across the English Channel.



ben.jpg (23292 bytes)
Back at the track, Ben, one of John Crawford's fine lads, gives us a U.S. tribute, his fine imitation of our Statue of Liberty. Crawford's shop and his people have treated us like royalty.


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