Art & Entertainment | Book Reviews | Education | Entertainment Video | Health | Lifestyle | Sport | Sport Video | Search

 


Kiwi Drivers Prepare For World Rally Event

Media release – immediate

Kiwi Drivers Prepare For World Rally Event.

Hamilton Rally driver Gary Smith and his co-driver, and fellow Caltex Service Station dealer, Christchurch’s Grant Ford are currently in the throngs of preparing their Historic Ford Escort RS1800 MKII for the iconic world rally event, the Classic Sydney to London Marathon Rally.

Smith is no stranger to similar events, having competed in the reverse version in 1993 with expat Graham Lorimer, then also in a Ford Escort, where the pairing led the event for most of its distance until succumbing to delays in the Australian outback and finishing 5th outright.

Smith said “I was talking to Aussie Keith Callinan (who is also competing in a Ford Escort) and he persuaded me that life is too short to not do the event, so we lodged and entry and we will be part of the John Giddings Memorial Trophy gravel section, which takes competitors from the start in Sydney, across Australia to Perth.”

The first leg of Sydney to London event which starts on April 12th will cover nearly 8000kms of some of the most remote parts of the Australian outback, before finishing in Perth after 12 days covering some 33 competitive stages.

Smith added “The second section after flying the cars from Perth to Ankara in Turkey is all tarmac stages to the finish the UK, and doesn’t hold as much interest, so we’ll give that a miss. The Aussie section will be a tough enough experience, and we don’t have the budget to do it all anyway.”

Despite some early interest from other New Zealand teams, it looks like Smith and Ford will be the only kiwi representation. “It is a huge exercise, with the logistics of shipping the car, organising accommodation, service crew vehicles, and I have to get fit again for the long days of driving.” Smith said.

Smith says “Age is catching up with my competitive days, but despite that I don’t expect it to be a gentleman’s event, and a respectable top 10 finish in Perth is very achievable, but with much of the competition made up of Aussies who are more familiar with the terrain, it will be a tough ask.”

Smith who is a director of the local marathon event the epay Silver Fern Rally added, “I need the car back for the Silver Fern event here later in the year, but the opportunity to promote our event to the Australians was additional incentive to be part of their adventure.”

Smith’s rallying history goes back to the mid 1970’s when he was teamed with 1982 National Champion Tony Teesdale, before embarking on his own career in a Ford Escort. Later Smith was instrumental in bringing some iconic cars and drivers to New Zealand shores, including the Motogard Opel Manta 400’s, ex world champion Stig Blomqvist in the Ford Sierra XR4x4, as well as the late Colin McRae and his father Jimmy in Sierra Cosworth’s.

More recently Smith and a dedicated team have embarked on recreating the days of old rallying with Historic and Classic 2wd cars in New Zealand’s own marathon epay Silver Fern rallies.

ENDS

© Scoop Media

 
 
 
 
 
Culture Headlines | Health Headlines | Education Headlines

 

With Hunters & Collectors: The Rolling Stones Announce New Auckland Date

It’s the news New Zealand has been waiting for. The Rolling Stones today confirmed the rescheduled dates and venues for both the Australian and New Zealand legs of their highly anticipated ’14 On Fire’ tour. Now, Frontier Touring is also delighted ... More>>

ALSO:

Flying Things: Conchords, Pretties Help BATS Fly Home

The launch of BATS theatre’s fundraising campaign has taken off – with a bit of help from their friends. And with friends like theirs… An event last night hosted by Te Radar at Wellington’s latest waterfront venue, Shed 6, featured Fly My Pretties and, in a dream-come-true scenario, Flight of the Conchords. More>>

ALSO:

Environment: Zoo’s Own Wētā Workshop Produces Rare Giants For Release

Following unprecedented breeding and rearing success, Auckland Zoo is today releasing 150 of New Zealand’s largest giant wētā, the wētā punga, onto pest-free Motuora Island in the Hauraki Gulf. A further 150 will be released onto Tiritiri Matangi next month. More>>

Girls On Film: Divergent Hits The Big Screen

n January, Catching Fire (the second film in the Hunger Games series) not only became the biggest US box office success of 2013 : it also became the first film starring a female actor (ie. Jennifer Lawrence) to top the annual domestic earnings chart since The Exorcist, 40 years ago. More>>

ALSO:

Wellington.Scoop: No Travel Sanctions For Russian Billionaire’s Superyacht

On the same day that New Zealand announced travel sanctions against selected Russians, a Russian billionaire’s superyacht berthed in Wellington Harbour. More>>

ALSO:

Mental Health: UC Researchers Believe Robots Can Persuade People To Conform

A team of University of Canterbury (UC) researchers and scientists believe robots can persuade people to conform through group pressure... ``Our results showed that robots can induce conformity but to a significantly lesser degree than humans." More>>

NZ On Air: Local Content Holds Steady At 32% Of Television Schedules

Since 1989 NZ On Air has measured local free-to-air television content. The report compares the schedules of the six national free-to-air channels, to observe trends and changes in the local content landscape. More>>

Arts Fest: 2014 New Zealand Festival A Spectacular Celebration

The New Zealand Festival welcomed the world to Wellington over 24 days (21 Feb – 16 Mar) of arts events across the city. “[current figures show] slight increase on the 110,000 tickets issued in 2012. It’s a great result.” More>>

Opera: Happy 70th Birthday Dame Kiri Te Kanawa

Our first lady of song who “feels more like at 15 year old” will celebrate her significant birthday on stage at Covent Garden tomorrow night (Friday morning NZT), performing in the Royal Opera House’s production of La fille du régiment (The Daughter of the Regiment) as La Duchess de Crackentorp. More>>

ALSO:

Get More From Scoop

 

LATEST HEADLINES

 
 
 
 
Culture
Search Scoop  
 
 
Powered by Vodafone
NZ independent news