Highlands Festival of Speed teams up with Aussie Racing Cars

3 December, 2014

It’s been confirmed that the two-day Highlands Festival of Speed — Muscle Car Battle, to be held over the weekend of January 30–February 1, 2015, has been paired with the popular Aussie Racing Cars. 

Powered by 1.2-litre, 125hp, twin-cam, 16-valve engines and weighing only 450kg, the Aussie Racing Cars (ARC) will easily reach 230kph plus on the Highlands’ circuit straights. Constructed on a purpose-built space-frame chassis, the cars sport one of numerous composite panel designs, including the classic ’40 Ford and FJ Holden body styles, Ford Falcon, and Holden Commodore. This year ARC designers have taken inspiration from American muscle, including characteristics from Ford’s Mustang and Chevrolet’s Camaro.

All cars are approximately half the size of their full-sized counterparts and all mechanically identical. On top of that, Falcon GTs, Boss Mustangs, Chevrolet Camaros, Chrysler Chargers, Holden Monaros, and the giant-killing Holden Toranas are just some of the iconic muscle cars you’ll see racing throughout that weekend. Then there’s the other categories competing — modern and classic saloons, vintage and classic single seaters, and Formula Libre open-wheelers.

Taking place at the world-class Highlands Motorsport Park, fans can enjoy classic car racing, classic and retro displays of cars, motorcycles, caravans, and boats, as well as other fun, classic entertainment for the family.  

Highlands’ General Manager, Mike Sentch, is looking for a range of vehicles, from hot rods to immaculate classics — if you reckon your car fits the bill, get in touch with him at [email protected]. There’s no charge, and you’ll be provided with one free weekend pass if your vehicle is chosen. 

Travelling companion

It’s easy to see why the Morris Minor Traveller was one of the best-loved variants of the Morris Minor. Introduced in 1953, it was equipped with the same independent torsion bar front suspension, drum brakes, and rack and pinion steering as its saloon sibling but, with their foldable rear seat increasing versatility, many Travellers were used as trade vehicles, says Derek Goddard. Derek and Gail Goddard, the owners of this superbly restored example, have run Morris Minors since before they were married in 1974.
“Our honeymoon vehicle was a blue Morris Minor van — it was a rust bucket,” says Derek.

Super Leicht Gullwing

It’s fair to say that nothing much in the classic Mercedes world gets past Mercedes-Benz Club stalwart Garry Boyce so it wasn’t surprising to learn that around 15 years ago he had sniffed out an extremely rare 300SL lightweight Gullwing as well as a 1958 300SL Roadster hiding away in the Waikato. The cars were not for sale but Garry eventually managed to persuade the owner to allow him and his restoration team to take a look at the Roadster. They discovered a very distressed but largely unmolested car. The car was so original that the body had never been off the chassis, meaning most of the parts and fittings were still present and correct, as they had been fitted by the factory.