FEBRUARY EXCURSION – BOWRAL

The aim of the excursion was a visit to the Bradman Museum at Bowral, followed by lunch at the Moss Vale Services Club. Looked straight forward enough but unexpected happenings made the day a little more interesting than intended.

A good crowd of members and guests assembled at Big Daddy’s Burger Bar at Casula. Light breakfasts and other refreshments were ordered prior to the beginning of the journey. Amongst the collection of Z cars was an extremely rare, bright red Jensen Healey. This became a magnet for the rabid car enthusiasts. Opening the bonnet revealed an immaculate engine bay sporting a 2.0L Lotus 907 engine which made 107kws. Because of the light weight, this sports car was capable of 0-100kms/hr in 7.8seconds. This was fantastic performance for the 1970s.

Refreshments and talking over (for now) – it was time to start the journey. Ray, still suffering knee stiffness from the recent surgery, led the charge in the non Z white sedan and headed towards the Hume Motorway. Slipping onto the Old Hume Highway the convoy cruised towards the Bradman Museum situated in Jude St Bowral. Arriving at the Bradman Museum the convoy group was joined by a number of members and guests who had found it more convenient to go directly to Bowral.

The numbers had swelled considerably to an impressively large crowd. However, there was another group of people drawing attention away from our main group. Apparently, a very large St Bernard (look-a-like) dog had managed to wedge itself under the steering wheel as the lady owner got out of the car.

Brett Haines was on his hands and knees, dismantling parts of the seat and other bits in an attempt to extricate this extra-large mammal. He had been at it some time before the convoy arrived. Mmm, could this has been part of a very cunning plan “C”, i.e. if Mum and Dad have both been at the local – let the dog drive home! Ultimately, Brett managed to free the canine, and the Z Car group was able to move into the Bradman Museum.

This is a very impressive museum. Not only does it tell the story of Australian cricket – but it also displays a large part of Australian history itself as cricket has been ongoing in Australia for more than a century. 

There are numerous video and static displays and to take it all in takes at least an hour. There is a small thirty seat theatre which was viewing the story of Australian cricket and its commercialisation by Kerry Packer, which brought cricket in Australia to a whole new level. Despite fierce opposition from the Australian Cricket Board (at the time) Packer persevered and advanced Australian cricket to a much more entertaining experience. Some of the Z Car members and guests viewed this documentary and all found the experience highly informative and interesting.

It was now time for lunch at the Moss Vale Services Club about 10kms away. Unlike the ultra-smooth trip to the Bradman Museum (by the World’s worst navigator) – the last km of the journey to the Moss Vale Services Club went slightly off the rails. The sat nav didn’t state that Yarrawa St Moss Vale was divided by a railway line and instead of turning right the convoy followed “the leader” straight ahead. Coming to an abrupt halt, the convoy did a “u” turn and finally arrived at the Club.

It was pleasing to see that the numbers of members and guests exceeded the booked 25 places. At least one extra chair had to be found. The final total was estimated to be 27 with eighteen cars in attendance.

Consistent with previous dining experiences at this club; meals were excellent and well-priced. Likewise, liquor was well-priced and of a good standard (try and beat a quality Semillon Sauvignon Blanc for $13 a bottle!).

The excursion proved to have all the right ingredients for success – excellent company, good drive, interesting venue and a great dining experience to round off the day.