There had to be a number of “early morning risings” to accommodate our early start from the Crossroads Hotel at Casula. The target was the Kiama Showground for the Kiama Car spectacular – where display cars had to be through the gates by 10.00AM. The initial 12 cars left the Casula Hotel at around 8.30AM and joined the Hume Motorway. This route was chosen for two reasons – the first was to give the convoy a free run without the annoying traffic lights that would be part of the “Appin route” and the second was to pick up some of the “deep south” members at a more convenient pickup point.
The Zed convoy motored pleasantly along the Hume Motorway at the posted speed limits. Every now and then a “looker motorist” would move in for a closer look – and the more annoying would deliberately cut into the convoy – separating the group.
After about 25 minutes on the motorway the group reached the Picton Rd turnoff at Wilton. Some kilometres further on the convoy reached the remaining three “deep south” zedders. The convoy then pulled off the road to regroup. After a few minutes of pleasantries a glance at the wrist watches indicated that it was after 9.00AM with still about 65kms to go. The Zed group of now fifteen vehicles started to move swiftly along the Princes Highway entry ramp road.
Fortunately, the convoy had an unimpeded run with the lead car changing several times due to traffic conditions.
The traffic flow started to slow down as the convoy progressed past Wollongong and the time was becoming a bit of a concern (i.e. to make the 10.00AM deadline). Fortunately, the traffic flow improved somewhat as Kiama was approached.
Then it all bogged down again as the main township of Kiama hove into view.
The lead car signalled to Ray to take over the “point position” of the convoy as Kiama was entered. The Sat Nav in Ray’s 370Z was at this point becoming a little confused (as distinct from being electronically lost) – so the analogue stand by maps came out. However a sign with a pointing arrow “Kiama Spectacular” was suddenly sighted and the confusing back streets of Kiama became a little clearer. Another pointing arrow sign magically appeared and the Kiama Showground loomed into view.
At the entrance to the Kiama Showground the optional donation for cancer research became a mandatory $5 donation. None of the Zedders complained but entrance for the display cars was supposed to be free with a voluntary donation at the driver’s discretion.
The convoy was ushered in and shown where to park in the designated spot. The Zedders had made it with ten minutes to spare.
The weather started to look a little ominous with storm clouds darkening the sky. Then it started raining – fortunately not heavy showers. The group started wandering around to look at the other display vehicles with some very old (but modified) Ford and Chevrolets dating back to the late 1920s and early thirties on display. A number of these had “rod style” exposed engine blocks and the increasing rain was causing some concern. Noted also was some old MGs and a Vauxhall Velox from the nineteen fifties and a strange modified pink truck with an oval grill.
But the piece de resistance had to be the hand built fibreglass “GTR” sports car with a 7 litre Corvette engine and Le Mans styling. This attracted onlookers like a powerful magnet. The owner informed Anthony that it had cost $150,000 to build.
At this point in time (about 10.45AM) John arrived (he must have used his considerable charm and animal magnetism to get through the gates after the 10.00AM “curfew”). The Zedders welcomed the newest member Phil. Phil was planning to bring his 300ZX Z32 TT but in the “Rolls Royce” vernacular it had “failed to proceed”. So, he had arrived in his Chev Camaro instead.
Judging by the Kiama Car Spectacular guest judges was to take place at 12.00 Midday. By this time everyone had been soaked by the ongoing showers. Despite the fifteen gleaming and beautifully prepared Zeds attracting very large crowds promoting numerous discussions with the owners by interested spectators – not one attracted the judges’ eyes.
In fact, not a single Japanese car on display got an award (a bit of deja vu from other car shows?).
It was also the Z Car Club of Sydney official Show and Shine. Terry and Les carried out the judging around 1.00PM.
Because a number of Zedders had departed before the official score had been announced – the winners of the various categories will be officially announced in a subsequent newsletter. Those who attend the December Kangaroo Valley excursion (and left before the final Show and Shine scoring at Kiama) can talk to Terry on the day and eligible members can pick up their trophies.
Overall, apart from the disappointing weather, it proved to be a pleasant day, with an enjoyable drive, interesting display vehicles, good technical discussions, rewarding interaction with the public and the usual good humour and friendship of the Z Car group.