Model A rally rolls around the region

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Ford Model A cars like these will be spotted on the roads of Western and Northern Southland this week, as the 14th National Model A Rally bases itself in Te Anau. Photo Supplied

THE rumbling of 75 Ford Model A engines will fill the streets of Invercargill today as a fleet makes its way around Southland.

Owners from around the country, and a few fanatics from Australia, the United Kingdom and United States, make up the 150-team group for the 14th National Model A Rally, which set-off on Monday and will finish in Te Anau tomorrow.

Model A group president John Tremaine said the event brought like-minded people together from across the globe.

“It’s a chance to get together with owners from the national Model A owners club.”

The Ford Model A was built between late 1927 and 1931 and the cars in the rally were worth between $15,000 and $40,000.

During the past week, car enthusiasts took part in the Lake to Lake Rally to Walter Peak Station and Homestead and split into two today for the South Arm and Southern Tour Rally through Manapouri, around Western Southland and back to Te Anau.

A public open day was held at Lions Park in Te Anau yesterday, where the cars took part in a gymkhana and were judged by Sir Richard Hayes.

“The judges [were] looking to hand out awards for the overall winner, people’s choice and the model in the best condition,” Mr Tremaine said.

The first rally was held in 1984 with just 20 Ford Model A cars.

Originally, the rally was hosted every four years and the North and South Islands took turns, but now it is held every second year.

With no plans to cancel the tradition, he hoped more people would get on board for future rallies, Mr Tremaine said.

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