Quirky and classic cars cruise for charity

31 January, 2015

A convoy of classic cars and quirky vehicles will wind its way around the North Island from March 6–14, 2015, as part of the 25th Trillian Variety Bash, a rally to raise funds for Kiwi kids via Variety — the Children’s Charity.

The Bash has raised nearly $8 million since its inception, which has gone towards helping kids who are going through a rough time look forward to a brighter future. The event will see teams, accompanied by a swathe of local celebrities, travel from the Taranaki to Ohakea via Wanganui, and on to Waiouru, before heading South towards Wellington, with a pause at Parliament. From there, the convoy will travel to Napier, Taupo, Rotorua, Tauranga, and then head into Auckland via Cambridge. The procession begins on March 6 in New Plymouth, winding up in Auckland on March 14, for a grand celebration at MOTAT.

Silverdale’s Kaeleb Dovey tries out the Liberty Swing which Bashers donated to his Silverdale School

Each participating team pledges thousands of dollars of fundraising to the cause, as well as collecting along the way, and every ‘Basher’ (as they’re known) believes in the charity’s core values — helping New Zealand children, whether it’s via a specialized laptop for a blind, deaf, or autistic child, sports kit for the financially disadvantaged, or books and equipment for rural schools.

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.