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TOPDOWN2019 Issue 4A Car for Many Seasons Plus: Spitfires and Churches THE OFFICIAL MAGAZINE OF THE MX5 CLUB OF NEW ZEALANDw w the birthplace…
TOPDOWN2019 Issue 4A Car for Many Seasons Plus: Spitfires and Churches THE OFFICIAL MAGAZINE OF THE MX5 CLUB OF NEW ZEALANDw w the birthplace of the legend THREE friends meet … two, senior engineers, relate how their firm is looking to create a small affordable sports car, perhaps front-drive, maybe mid-engined. The third, an American automotive writer, suggests why not another way, something akin to those crazy British sports cars of the ‘60s. So maybe you know the story …. perhaps you’d now like to see where the MX-5 was born. Motoring journalist and MX-5 owner Richard Bosselman and travel broker and Japan expert Leisa Steele propose to take a small party of MX-5 enthusiasts on a fantastic two-week journey to Japan. Visit a land where ancient tradition fuses with modern life to pay homage to our favourite car in its birthplace. Tour the production line, explore Mazda’s museum, experience the roads on which the roadster was honed, visit Mazda Clinic, where first-generation cars are restored. Meet a man who brought this baby car to life. With 15 years in the travel industry and having lived in Japan, Leisa has intimate knowledge of our destination. Our tour is for fun-loving epicures “Japan is a foodie’s dream and at every turn there is a new local delicacy to discover” – who enjoy the ease of an escorted journey yet also embrace opportunity to explore. We’ll stay in a mix of traditional ryokan and hotels and travel during autumn, a stunning season in Japan.Travel dates: End of September October 2020 TBA. 15 days, with minimum three nights in each main locale.The proposed itinerary: Tokyo - Hakone - Hiroshima (Mazda’s home town, Himeji castle, Miyajima island) Kyoto - Osaka.Price: Is still being finalised, but we estimate around $NZ7,800 per person, GST included. Keen to come along?Contact: Richard Bosselman, for more details. Leisa Steele Travel Broker2T: +64 9 372 3590 | +64 21 044 8523 Waiheke Island, Auckland TOPDOWN MAGAZINEw w–AUGUST Guidelines Feel free to submit articles via email. Articles should be no longer than 900 words. Include your name (and the article author’s name if different), contact details and use full names in text. If you submit an article, you agree to have it edited as the Editor sees fit. The NZ MX5 Club does not pay for submissions. If the article has been published before in any form, please indicate. TopDown is read by all ages, so take this into account when considering subject material and language. No article which the Editor or the NZ MX5 Club deems to encourage breaking the law, either directly or by inference, will be printed.Picture Guidelines High resolution JPEGs are preferred. (300 dpi). The preferred method for submission of images is by email. No single image should exceed 8 MB. All photographs must be submitted with the permission of the photographer. Vehicle registration numbers will be shown unless removal is requested. Please Note: The Editor cannot guarantee a date for publication. The above are guidelines only, and may be varied in exceptional circumstances. THE EDITOR’S DECISION IS FINAL.Deadline for Next Issue: October 1st 2019 Contents copyright © 2019 Design and Edit: Brian Thurogood Printer: Brebner Print, Hamilton.4 5 6Club Committee & Regional Co-ordinators From the President, Keith Jones16Mountain Tracks and Unique Churches18Play Equipment in MarlboroughAn Impromptu MX-5 Event and aircraft to the fore8 10 12 14Cemeteries, Forests and Mulled Wine For Film Buffs and Car Buffs Alike Outings and Adventures for All Ages Round the Mountain National Run 2019Picture Credits – Front Cover: Northern & Manawatu; Back Cover: Kapiti & Taranaki20 24-27Ohakea Airbase and Biggin Hill222019 AGM ReportsClub Sponsors and “Trade Off” ClassifiedsDisclaimer: This magazine does not necessarily reflect the opinion of the Editor or the Committee of the MX5 Club of New Zealand. It is intended to provide general articles and information only. While every care has been taken to ensure the accuracy of the information it contains, neither the Editor, Committee or the authors can be held liable for inaccuracies, errors or omissions. Copyright is reserved throughout. No part of this magazine can be reproduced or reprinted without the express permission of the Editor. All information is current at the time of printing and the Editor takes no responsibility for any factors that may change thereafter.3w w Committee President Keith Jones, 027 436 2568, Vice-President Ron Bol, 021 068 7951, Secretary Marilyn Harp, 021 617 729, Treasurer Sandra Jones, 027 428 4606, Committee Members Mark Brinsbury Jenny Wieland Graeme Banks Denis Smith Barry Potenger Murray Lee Donna Lee Allan Boot Co-Ordinators Whangarei / Twin CoastsManawatuTerry Conaghan Phone: 09 437 0898 Mobile: 027 237 0084 Email: and Philip Stewart Mobile: 021 925 223 Email: manawatumx5club@gmail.comNorthern incl Auckland Keith Jones Mobile: 027 4362 568 Email: and Keith Ewing Phone: 06 379 7709 Mobile: 027 274 4443 Email: incl HamiltonNelson/TasmanGary and Maureen Major Phone : 0272426783 Email : meerkat352@gmail.comKevin and Gaylene St John Phone: 03 542 3838 Mobile: 021 542 3838 Email: of Plenty incl Tauranga Karen Struiksma Mobile: 027 342 7189 Email: Bay incl Napier/ HastingsTo be advisedMike & Rosemary Hurley Phone: 06 878 9265 Mobile: 021 152 6573 Email: hawkesbaymx5club@hotmail.comTaranaki Nora Hunn Phone: 06 761 8864 Mobile: 027 2160 608 Email: norahunn@gmail.comMazda MX5 Club of New Zealand Inc PO Box 15551, New Lynn, Auckland Email: warm welcome to our newest members:To be advisedCanterbury Dunedin/Otago Clint Trewin Phone: 03 455 3246 (Work) Mobile: 027 435 8510 (A/hours) Email: Southland/Invercargill Peter Glover Phone: 03 217 7187 Mobile: 027 634 3900 Email: subscriptions – $70.00 per car, per year for full membership, including TopDown magazine. For membership application forms, visit our website or email the Membership Co-ordinators – Murray & Donna Lee on Tobin & Sine SymondsChris & Anne Leech Tony & Carolyn Whitehead Rua Pani & Wayne Earle Jose Banuelos Grant Ford & Del Burgess Tony DevittNorthern / AucklandWaikato / HamiltonRobin Cook & Anne LawsonSuzette & Andre Van Zyl Grant & Karen CowleyMarlboroughHawkes Bay / Napier/ HastingsSouthlandWhangarei / Twin CoastsNick Smith & Amy Roper Clive Granger Elizabeth Fyfe-Morgan Justin Rosaria & Jane Sy Josette Watson4Kapiti CoastUna & Brendan SmithMichelle Ritchie & Debbie Willette Richard & Allison Smith Michael & Annie BraggNelson / TasmanAndrew Waine Jared ChevinNew members should start receiving emails from their regional co-ordinator regarding details of upcoming trips. If you are new to the club and coming along for the first time, please make yourself known to the event organiser.w w the President Once again we had a good turnout at the Annual General Meeting, held at Mazda NZ on 30 June. The Minutes from the meeting and the Financial Reports are elsewhere in this issue, so I don’t need to make much more comment other than to thank all those that came and those elected to the National Committee for the 2019/20 year. As noted in the AGM Minutes, the matter of Life Membership produced some vigorous discussion and a mandate to the incoming Committee to look into the matter and formulate proposals for discussion at next year’s AGM. The Committee is already onto this with a subcommittee formed to investigate options for the full Committee to consider. Renewal of membership forFrom the Editor As some members have reported in their Run Reports in this issue, weather conditions have often been a concern when setting out. However, in many cases there have been bright spots in the day and the “top-down” option has been taken. Nelson and Taranaki members have enjoyed very informative visits to airfields with both historical and current small aircraft options on display. Hot teas and coffees have been much appreciated, while Kapiti Coast mentioned that mulled wine can be an excellent winter warmer. Manawatu’s visit to the Southward Car Museum – with more than 400 cars – also provided the opportunity to view a few carefully maintainedthe 2019/20 year is going well, with 238 having renewed as at 18 July. If you are planning to maintain your membership, but haven’t paid yet, please do so as soon as possible as at the end of August all non-financial members will be removed from the membership and TopDown distribution lists. Everything is in place for this year’s Driver Training Day at Manfeild. As usual there was a good demand for places, withthe full complement of 50 drivers having registered within three weeks of registration opening. If you missed out but would like to vehicles from the movie world. Aircraft, motorbikes and pioneer bicycles are also on display. There are three reports on the Round the Mountain national run, one from Northern/ Auckland and two from Taranaki. By all accounts an extremely successful outing and with plenty of driving and entertainment fun. You’ll also find extensive coverage from the Club’s AGM, with reports from the President, the Treasurer and the Secretary, all with important details for members to read. And for those who enjoy arithmetic, you’ll see the facts and figures record a strong financial position. As always, huge thanks to the Regional Coordinators and active members who arrange and go on the runs, and who provide us with great articles and interesting photographs. Deadline for TopDown’s next submissions is Oct 1st. – Brian Thurogoodgo on the waiting list, please let me know, we invariably get some cancellations before the event. Initial preparations are also going well for the 2021 National Rally, being hosted by the Bay of Plenty Region over the weekend of 16-19 April 2021. It will be based at Rydges Hotel in Rotorua and the organisers are already busy planning the runs. Over the years we have tried a For Sale section on the website for those wanting to sell their MX5 or spares. Historically this has not been a success and we removed it from the last website several years ago. However, we have recently had requests from several people wanting to sell their cars, so are giving it another go and have included a section on the new website. If you are upgrading your car and would like to advertise it on the website go to the link below and follow the instructions: – Keith Jones, PresidentAbout your Membership Just a reminder to all members that have not paid subs for this year. The subs need to be paid by 31 August. If not paid, then this issue of TopDown will be your last and your membership will be cancelled. The sub rate is still $70 per year, as it has been for the last couple of years. One note of caution: If you are an existing member and intend to wait until January thinking that you will only pay half fees, be warned this will not work. Your membership will be returned. The half fee is only for new members (we do keep a record of cancelled memberships). Looking forward to meeting you all at events. – Membership Coordinatorsw w 28th 2019 Eight MX5ers had a really enjoyable morning on Sunday 28th, and soon came up with a plan that involved coffee, conversation, a drive, an interesting visit, plus a yummy lunch at a venue new to all of us. We started with coffee in the warmth of the WOW cafe, where we enjoyed meeting Morris and Margaret who are new members, this being their second event. Then we went to a restricted area of the airport – inside a hangar which our long time member Kevin could give us access to. He showed us a gyrocopter which is powered by a 4 cylinder Subaru engine! Most of us had never seen one before. Also in the hangar was a microlight with an Australian Jabiru 6-cylinder engine. It was great to have an expert on hand to answer our questions! Then Kevin showed us his own aircraft, which he has owned for 19 years and spent many hours flying over this time. It is a high wing microlight with an expensive $35,000 Rotax engine. Off for lunch next to the6AN IMPROMPTU MX-5 EVENTStory and Photos by Sandra-Louise Abbey Grill on Appleby Highway. The theme there is the Beatles, with a range of burgers and other dishes on the menu with names such as Submarineburger and Abbey Road burger. Unfortunately none of us had room for the desserts – we’ll have to go again to sample those! Thanks to everyone who came along to make this another enjoyable MX5 outing.•Nelson / TasmanJUNE 30th 2019 Ten seats were booked for the Green Grass Restaurant, but 13 turned up so it meant squeezing in a few more seats which made everyone cosy. We enjoyed a very nice meal, although unfortunately owing to a fully booked venue of around 40/50 people, it was quite noisy. It took an hour to get our meals, however the wait was well worth while, giving us a chance to catch up on any gossip.•Story and Photos by Colin & Eileen Wilkin7Cemeteries, Forests and Mulled Wine JUNE 23rd 2019Mid-winter mulled wine run All Photos by Gaye Forster Fourteen cars, 13 MX-5s and a black Kia (or mobile dog kennel) met at one of the usual club rendezvous spots, the Ground Up café, in Pauatahanui on a cool and somewhat murky Sunday morning. The usual spirited conversations flowed over coffee and snacks; topics such as topless or top up, recent restaurant experiences, and car colour preferences were some of the conversations of the day. Ceinwen distributed run sheets to us all and we departed from the café along Grays Road towards Plimmerton. At the traffic lights we turned northward onto SH1 and proceeded to the Whenua Tapu cemetery at the southern end of the Pukerua Bay hill. Entering the well kept cemetery, we drove over the Main Trunk railway bridge (I am unaware of any other cemeteries with such a bridge within their boundaries) and carried out a circuit of the upper section, at a respectful rather than respectable speed. Emerging from the main gate we then turned right onto Airlie Road and continued over the hill into the Karehana Bay end of Plimmerton for a brief photo stop with Mana Island providing a backdrop to our cheerful group. Some hoods, most in fact, were raised at this point as the weather had become somewhat pluvial, to paraphrase Sir Geoffrey Palmer. Being the weekend of the shortest day or longest night, the local kindergarten was running its annual midwinter swim and the waterfront had quite a festive air with a barbecue for participants. Our group attracted a bit of attention from locals8as we proceeded through the Plimmerton village to SH1 again and turned south, continuing through to the Whitford Brown traffic lights where we turned off towards the Gear Homestead grounds. We drove around the grounds and on into the Adrenaline Forest area next door, observing others who were up in the trees showing off their skills on zip lines and such. We then travelled a couple of kms to Ceinwen and Godfreys’ home; Godfrey had stayed home from the run to prepare the mulled wine, savouries and cake which were appreciated by all. After an hour or two of pleasant conversation and good company we then all headed off in our different homeward directions. On behalf of the Kapiti Chapter I must extend alarge vote of thanks to Godfrey and Ceinwen for their efforts to make the day the success it was. The run, although fairly local, took many of us to interesting places that we had not been to before and the catering at their home was very enjoyable.– Mike Dennehy (Tail end Charlie) Thank you both once again for your warm hospitality and delicious mulled wine. A little wet didn’t dampen our spirits and we enjoyed the short drive visiting Whenutapu Cemetery, stopping at Plimmerton for photoKapiti Coast / Wellington opportunity – a very busy spot with midwinter swim happening just up the road (film crew apparently wasn’t for us!). Back to Papakowhai a small detour has us winding through a carpet of pine needles in the amazing Adrenalin Forest which I didn’t realise existed, then arriving a Godfrey’s & Ceinwen’s place all warm and cosy and the alluring fragrance of mulled wine.– Gaye ForsterCITY GARAGE C I T Y C I G T A Y R A G EFull mechanical & auto electrical repairs; WOF’s, tunes, lubes, brakes, clutches Carried out by expert Mazda trained techniciansSupporting the MX5 Club with a 5% rebate 16 Waverley St, Auckland Phone 09 379 5649 Email: FILM BUFFS AND CAR BUFFSand storage warehouse that is for the most part MAY 19th 2019 definitely off-limits. The sight of a brand-new McLaren 650S Not this day, though. Restorations manager Spider Can-Am at the Southward Car Museum John Bellamore was on sight to guide members reminds us this collection is not simply fixed on the past – though, admittedly, many of through the area; stopping first to scrutinise the stripped down chassis of a 1962 Brabham BT2 the more than 400 cars (and three aircraft) single seater, rare not just because it is believed in the collection are rare and increasingly just one of 11 in the world, but also because of its valuable artefacts. history. Created to mark 50 years since the Cam-Am Roy ‘The Weasel’ James, getaway car driver racing series began and, naturally enough, it has for The Great Train Robbery, is purported the number five on it – because that was Bruce to have driven the car before his role in the McLaren’s race number. infamous crime in 1963, for which he was jailed For the Manawatu Region, a visit to Southward for 11 years. There is on May 19 – with an also evidence to suggest alternate side-trip to Manawatu Kiwi Formula One driver the Ruth Pretty Kitchen Denny Hulme also raced Shop at nearby Te it before it came into the Horo for those few Run To Southward Car Museum possession of racing more into cuisine than Story and Photos by driver Graham McRae. cars – was more about Funnily, a lot of the destination than the Richard Bosselman members lost interest journey. in a car that will take pride of place on the The one drawback of taking a trip from display floor once returned to original state Palmerston North to Kapiti to this internationallywhen they caught sight of something in the next famous collection is that there really is ultimately bay – a farm-built orchard sprayer that married just one route – at least from Levin south – and components of at least two different 1920s’ it’s hardly a challenging one. State Highway One almost all the way, with no real possibility of going era vehicles with a top structure that appeared to be part packing case and part … well, your guess astray. is as good as anyone else’s. Still, for the automotive enthusiasts (the The ‘thing’ had clearly not run in decades and majority of members), the allure of not only seeing when John said it was actually being divested by the areas that are open to general scrutiny but the collection – ‘because we simply don’t know also those that are not was a magnet for a strong what to do with it’ – you could see plenty of hands turnout. reaching for wallets. To no avail: This prime The 90-minute run in great Sunday morning weather saw the group stop first
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