President’s Report

June 2022

Around the bend – the ravings of your President.

Our Car Club committee elections are upon us again. Several members are willing to go around again, one or two would like to step down but won’t leave us in the lurch, and we have a few having a break.

If you are interested in helping to steer our ship, please let me know. All the committee positions are open so if you know someone, I am the Returning Officer for the election. You need to let me know by text, phone or email. Details for that are in the magazine contacts page.

As I said, all positions are vacant and open, but in particular, we need a Public Relations Officer, Regalia, Social Director and Committee person. If anyone would like to take over as Treasurer, Greg has been trying to step down for several years.

A big thankyou to all members of the outgoing committee. I haven’t been to too many committee meetings or club nights this year due to clashes with work. That’s the hassle of not being retired. That is still a few years away so this will be my problem into the future. Hopefully next year will be better.

It was very disappointing to see that Wakefield Park has had massive restrictions placed upon them regarding their ability to function as a business. They are only allowed 4 x 95db days a month. After a 95db day they are now required to have 11 quiet days. That makes it very hard to organise events and keep all the clients and neighbours happy.

Some of the problems are due to the fact that there has been a breakdown in communications over many years and there seem to have been a failure by several parties to update legal requirements. There are a few new neighbours moving into the area who don’t like the noise, even though they knew the track was there, but the zoning wasn’t changed. There are historic families that I feel have a legitimate complaint (they were there first) but Wakefield has in a way bought some of this onto themselves by not updating its original DA which was never aimed at a 7 day a week business but envisaged more of a ‘Historic’ vibe of the original owners. 99.99% of historic race vehicles are well within the 95db limits that apply. My race Midget is tested most Wakefield Park meetings (as do all competitors) and the tester say I don’t come anywhere near the limit. At home my 240V chainsaw is rated at 93db and my whipper snipper at 110db.

Hopefully time and sanity will sort this out because the people and the town of Goulburn will be hurt the most. I can always race somewhere else, maybe at a greater expense but there are always meetings somewhere.

It will be a massive blow to Motorsport in NSW and Australia if we lose another track. Sydney Motorsport Park is hugely expensive and to give them a monopoly could make it even worse. Goulburn is reeling with the court decision and the massive loss of income to local businesses as people and companies cancel bookings at motels, and restaurants. The next GEAR meeting that was due this month has been cancelled. Hopefully sanity will prevail soon.

I saw on the club’s Face Book page a story on the possible electric convertible MG Cyberster. I’ll believe it when I see it in the showroom but it is a possibility by 2024. To me it looks like it has taken a lot of styling cues from the Mazda MX family and even a hint of Peugeot. Looks nice but will we ever see it?

I’ve certainly had a mixed bag of lollies this month. As you’ve seen, I’ve been working down in the Australian Alpine regions for Fire + Rescue. It was an amazing experience and I got to drive some interesting machinery. Driving a Hägglunds at 2am in a blizzard to a fire call is certainly different.

I got back expecting to get into the shed and play, but after 2 days, I was asked to go on a swift water rescue (I’m one of the silly people that jump in the water) deployment to the far north coast. All fine there except the first thing you do is a RAT and I tested positive for Covid. There goes the deployment but since I’m not feeling too bad, I might be able to start the MG jobs.

Monty (my B) is an ever evolving project. Almost since the day he was purchased 43 years ago, I’ve been playing, tweaking and enjoying. After these last few jobs, I think I may have finally got him the way I’m happy with (Bev will be glad to hear that). He was already in the shed so I grabbed the lowering blocks that I’d removed when I took him from ‘race’ height to ‘road’ height. I had the original front coils to put back (probably a tad soft) but I had a brand new set of rear MKI leaf spring in stock and thought why not. The trouble was that the old fronts and new rears didn’t match. Monty’s butt was flying high and he looked ridiculous.

So my first Covid isolation job was to put the lowering blocks back in. With the new leaf springs, he is now looking a lot more level.

Job 2, I was concerned that the geared starter motor (needed due to the higher engine compression) was not turning over as it should. I had some electrical gremlins last year (a dodgy fuse that looked fine but wasn’t) that had me changing the battery and also the original fuse box. I went through every major battery connection and even videoed the B cranking over and sent it to the ‘man’. He feels it is fine so a full check over was worth the effort.

Job 3, I came across some brand new, ultra-rare, original factory rubber floor mats. Out came the seats and the rear sections have been fitted. The fronts are an ongoing project.

Job 4, HUD. That’s a GPS speed heads up display. With the MkII overdrive gearbox fitted, the speedo was only good for filling the hole in the dash and telling lies. This new unit reflects onto the windscreen and will hopefully keep me nice and legal (though frustrated at drivers that can’t drive near the speed limit for no reason. Nothing like an old bloke in a 60 year old car overtaking the moderns). I have a few units to be fitted in the Midgets too.

Monty is now ready for whatever touring we want. 1st event on the list is the Rylstone Classic – pretend rally, real fun. He will be one of 4 MG’s in the event against 150+ Minis and lots of other classic machines (there’s even one Ferrari 308). 188 cars in total so at least 376 people landing on Rylstone doorstep for dinner on the 13th August.

Now onto Bev’s Midget’s front end and a carby resto. It’s strange that the more you pull off, the more you find to be done. Well that’s enough raving from me, please let me know if you want to stand on the committee. Nominating will be closing very soon.

Steve