2017 Aussie Muscle Car Run
Lincoln Auto Club members fronted in force once again to participate in this year’s Aussie Muscle Car Run.
Friday: After arriving at Eastern Creek Raceway on Friday we booked into the hotel, and then headed down to the pits to check the cars. Most had been trucked from Adelaide, and in our case had been trucked all the way from Port Lincoln. All good, no scratches and all fired up OK.
The Aussie Muscle Car Masters had been practising all afternoon with heats for different classes. After they had finished we had 1.5 hrs race time. General talk around the pits was (I am going to take it easy as it is the first day). The first lap was steady, but it only took 1 passing move and from then on it was flat out.
Cliffy tested his brakes at end of the straight whilst looking at his speedo rather than the fast approaching corner! Consequently he sent up the most smoke for the day. Lucky’s brakes could fry eggs after he had finished (claimed he had achieved 201 kph). Jason in Rough did the best time of the day and ended up with a stuffed clutch, which was replaced in the car park the next morning.
Saturday: After breakfast we all wandered across to the racetrack to watch Australian Muscle Car Masters in action followed by the official welcome to 2017 Australian Muscle Car Run participants that night.
Sunday: The course for the day was 384 kms to Canberra. But first we had to negotiate the chaos of downtown Sydney, cross over the Sydney Harbour Bridge (whatever way possible) for a photo shoot at McMahons Point.
From here it was back across the Bridge to Woolongong, while being filmed by the Channel 7 helicopter. As we were a little early it was decided to stop on the Bridge to wait for 37 cars to bunch up and wait for the helicopter. We could read “No Stopping on Bridge” signs, but thought it should be OK seeing it was Sunday! Wrong! As the tooting got more noticeable it was decided to move on to Woolongong via Sea Cliff Bridge.
Most saw the Sea Cliff Bridge and Woolongong, while others decided in their lost state of mind to set the GPS for Canberra and get there to have a soothing ale. One team even had Maccas that night as they thought tea might be finished at the motel by the time they got there. The Recovery truck had a busy night also as they recovered 3 cars for various reasons from up to 75 kms away.
Monday: A day to see the sights of Canberra and fix broken cars!
Tuesday: 523 kms to Benalla. Not an easy highway cruising day as we travelled to Adaminaby via Cooma for morning smoko. It was then on to Tumut through the Snowy Mountains for a twisty turny, but very scenic drive, before arriving in Albury for lunch.
While we had a Show and Shine, one team took the opportunity to do a quick clutch change, another to replace a fuel pump. From Albury we headed to Benalla to arrive by 6 pm. While some teams continued fine tuning their cars others relaxed and chewed the fat.
Wednesday: Breakfast at Benella Gliding Club then on to Winton Raceway for a day of racing. This is where AMCR entrants become Competitors with full on racing for the day. Most drivers kept their cars going around in the right direction for what was an entertaining days racing.
Thursday: 300 kms. Benella to Geelong
Headed to the You Yangs to the Ford testing grounds, and had lunch at the Werribee Bowls Club on the way. After arriving at the You Yangs we were briefed on what we were allowed to do and not do. No photos as there were a lot of cars driving around with camouflage. Then we had the privilege to drive around the banked testing track, which was built for the development of the XA Falcon and is still in use today. The bends have 3 levels of different gradients so as to mimic a flat continuous road. On these bends you could drive around at speed, let go of the steering wheel and stay in the correct lane. After that exhilarating drive, contestants had some driving around cones and parking in a garage, which was hilarious at times. After another exciting day of competition it was on to Geelong to the Rydges hotel for a meal and bed.
Friday: 400 kms Geelong to Mt Gambier.
Travelled to Portland via Mortlake (Clark’s Pies for morning smoko), then Warnambool to the Portland Drag Racing Strip. By this stage some cars had tired, others had retired, while the strong ones kept going to provide another entertaining afternoon. We then travelled to Mt Gambier for our last night of the run.
Saturday: 440kms Mt Gambier to Adelaide.
Departed Mt Gambier to Penola for a Show and Shine at the local IGA, which was well supported by the locals. On to Keith for lunch, then a leisurely cruise to Tailem Bend where we assembled before travelling in convoy for our last Show & Shine on Wigley Reserve, Glenelg.
Rodney Scharfe (right) and George Smith (left) cross the finish line at Glenelg. They were the only Pt Lincoln entrants not to have a ride on the recovery truck!
That night the Presentation dinner at the Stamford Grand was enjoyed by everyone. After dinner, awards were presented to the highest money raisers and the Champion Driver of the AMCR for 2017. The judges had a tough decision but after much consideration our own Legend of Local Motor Sport was awarded the prestigious trophy.
Some statistics of the event:
- Nearly $300,000 was raised for the Leukaemia Foundation of SA
- 37 cars competed
- 7 entrants from Port Lincoln
- 25 support staff including 2 medical personal
- 1 Tilt Truck ( kindly loaned by Tim Corbett from Port Augusta)
- 1 Leukaemia Foundation car trailer
Repairs for run included:
- 1 complete motor change (original dropped valve)
- 2 clutches
- 2 electric fuel pumps
- Several electronic ignition failures
- Baffle plate in sump coming loose and causing a lot of noise
- Plus a lot of other smaller issues (that’s the challenge when doing thousands of ks in older vehicles)
Overall a good time was had by all who participated. Discussion already is centred around next year’s event and its likely route, mostly within South Australia.
Article contributed by an anonymous MCR participant!