Black Belt Battle: Masterton Motorplex comp season kicking off

27 November, 2018



The weekend of 8–9 December will see round one of the Masterton Motorplex comp season kick off, and regulars to the track will not only be greeted by the welcome sight of absolutely gigantic timing boards, which where installed over winter, but also round one of the newly formed Outlaw 71 class,we mentioned in Issue No. 162. A full field of 16 racers are expected to run the five-round nationwide series, vying for their share of the $15,000 prize pool, which begins and ends at Masterton.

Outlaw 71 is the brain child of Gavin Doughty and Tod Aitken, and as the name suggests, welcomes any type of race car as long as it runs a belt-driven roots or screw blower with a dial-in between 6.5 and 7.9 seconds. Unique to the class is the reaction-time qualification system to ensure that it’s not always the fastest car nabbing the top qualifying spot. Organizer Gavin Doughty explains: “It’s all about putting on a show!” This is why the class has also adopted another unique aspect in its racer-return format, which means that the full field of 16 cars will contest each of the four rounds during a meeting, and a very tight points format will mean that the competition will go down to the wire.

Clearly it has excited racers, with the likes of Brent Whittingham’s Camaro, Mark Gapp’s Willys, Craig Griffith’s rear-engined dragster, Kendal Smith’s Altered, JD Shepherd’s FED, and Murray Hartley’s brand-new Mustang imported from Australia, all signed up to race.

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.