Warbirds over Wanaka to stage trucking tribute in 2016

2 July, 2015

Next Easter (March 25–28, 2016), the Warbirds Over Wanaka International Airshow will be sporting a newly added four-wheeled flavour, with organizers inviting truck owners nationwide to become part of the show via a new display dedicated to celebrating New Zealand’s affinity with the truck.

The planned ‘Warbirds and Wheels Century of Trucking’ display will aim to depict 100 years of truck culture in New Zealand, from vintage trucks right up to current-day examples. Hoping to have around 50 of the country’s leading trucks present, event organizer Mandy Deans is urging owners to register and become part of a fitting display of what some regard as one of New Zealand’s true motoring institutions.

“Several airshows ago we had an amazing display of Fords, which proved a big hit with our visitors. This time around we’re hoping to have up to 50 vehicles of all shapes and sizes from 1916 to the most modern trucks. Truck owners will need to register because we want to ensure we get a good representation of different trucks from various decades over the 100 years,” says Mandy.

Trucks and Warbirds over Wanaka have enjoyed a close relationship for a number of years. Various annual truck rallies have used the airshow as a convenient rest-stop during their travels. The show also already enjoys various established classic car displays, which will no doubt complement the incoming flow of trucking goodness.

If you’re wanting to register your truck for the Warbirds and Wheels Century of Trucking, registrations are open now.

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.