McMillin turns to nitro!

25 November, 2015


NZV8 columnist, and well-known drag racer, Morice McMillin has driven some fast cars during his drag racing career, but last Sunday the Hamilton-based driver had his first taste of nitro whilst completing licensing passes at Sydney Dragway, and, for him and his crew, the Aeroflow Triple Challenge can’t come soon enough.

When quizzed about how the ‘One Bad Kiwi’ nitro funny car compared to other cars he had raced, McMillin beamed with excitement. “Honestly, it’s like nothing I can compare at all, there’s just no comparison.
“If I had to put it into words – I suppose one is a bit of hail and one is a thunderstorm. It’s just the whole experience; the noise, the smell — the whole experience is just amazing!

“As soon as I sat in the car at the race shop, it just fit like a glove, everything was set up perfectly and it was just perfect for me.”
McMillin took his own crew with him so that they could also get to know the new car.
“For us, it’s a steep learning curve but the boys picked it up quickly under the guidance of Aaron Hambridge and the boys in the Aeroflow race shop — it was a great day.”

It was also the team’s first trip to Sydney Dragway, the venue for the massive December 12 event where the team are set to make their competition debut.
Morice added, “To race on a world-class facility is like nothing that you dream about. It will be great to see the huge field of funny cars all lined up in the staging lanes for the event.”
After the licensing, McMillin and his crew returned to the race shop to get the car ready for competition.

“We went back to the shop and serviced as much as we could today. Now we get the logistics in place for the event and make sure everything is good to go. Oh, and we will nervously wait,” he laughed.
But McMillin is not making the trip for enjoyment alone, he is looking for fast passes and win lights.

“Driving a funny car for Graeme Cowin was amazing, to run my first five is something you can’t put into words, but to race against the best in the business at the best funny car event you could imagine – we’ll that will be the dream come true!”

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.