Crowds flocked to Teretonga Park in Invercargill at the weekend as the circuit hosted the 25th year of Classic SpeedFest.
Many millions of dollars of very special racing cars were on show at the Evolution Motorsport supported event which saw some tremendous racing complemented by demonstration laps by a Ferrari 412T1B Formula 1 car during lunch each day.
The Formula Junior class with machinery worth over $4 million alone, including a Brabham once owned by Great Train Robber Roy James, was split into two sections depending on specification.
In Class One Anthony Olissoff of Auckland in his Emeryson Elfin MK1 won the first race from Danish visitor
Jac Nellemann in an Alfa Dana with the order reversed in the second. Nellemann won again on Sunday morning before Olissoff returned to balance the ledger in the fourth race.
In Class Two, Martin Bullock of West Australia in a Lotus won all four races while Noel Woodford of Auckland set a new lap record in his Gemini after a 10 second penalty for a jumped start in the first race. Phil Foulkes of Clevedon in a Lotus and former Southlander Grant Clearwater in a Cooper were also prominent.
Glenn Allingham of Auckland and Colin Dawson of Invercargill in their Chev Camaros’ had a fierce battle all weekend in the Historic Muscle Car races. They took two wins apiece with Dawson setting a new lap record on Saturday.
In the Historic Touring Cars ex Formula 1 driver Gianfranco Brancatelli, now based in Brazil, won all four races in a Ford Sierra RS500 with Stephen Grellet of Dunedin second each time.
Invercargill driver Brendan Mason in his Chev Camaro took out two of the four Classic Saloon Car races for cars over 2000cc with Tony Mann of Dunedin in a Capri and Queenstown driver Duane Ingley in a Dodge Challenger sharing the other wins.
Dean Sutherland of Oamaru in a Toyota Starlet won the first and last races in the Classic Saloons up to 2000cc class with Howard Wood of Auckland in a BMW winning the handicap race in his BMW 2002Ti while Stephen Hand of Christchurch won Sunday morning’s race after Ewan McPherson of Invercargill was penalised for a jump start.
Gary Cooper of Mosgiel was victorious in three of the Formula Libre races in a Reynard 92H after fastest qualifier Damon Leitch struck problems while Brendon Leitch finally made it onto the back of the grid for the finale in which he drove to second. John Williams of Christchurch won the other race in his Crossle.
Guy Stewart of Christchurch in a Porsche 911 iROC won the first Sports Car race on Saturday before Jason Crosbie of Invercargill took the other three in his Beck Special.
David Owen of Christchurch took the first Vintage Racing Car race in a Jaguar C Type before Paul Coghill of Dunedin in a Jaguar Special took all three of Sunday’s races.
Liam MacDonald won the opening Noel McIntyre Drainage Clubmans Saloon race from LeRoy Stevenson of Queenstown in the ex Rodger Freeth Starlet after Andrew Cundall and his Toyota Levin copped a 30 second time penalty before Cundall returned to win the remainder. Todd Blackmun of Invercargill set a new lap record for cars of 0-1300cc on Sunday
There were some minor incidents throughout the weekend but the lack of major drama was a tribute to the driving in some very hard fought races.