The weather gods were not kind but just prior to us leaving home, the sky was clear so we drove to our meeting point. A few brave Z enthusiasts greeted us at Heathcote and we huddled together out of the rain to discuss our plans. We voted to continue on our epic journey despite the weather. Z enthusiasts are a tough group.
A short 30 min drive had us arriving at Sublime Point during a perfect break in the rain and clouds. A group selfie, a look at the view and then back to the warmth of our cars. Sunrise Nursery at Helensburgh was a welcoming stopover for coffee, hot chocolates and a chance to all catch up on Z conversations. Terry surprised everyone with his new 350Z which proved a great choice on the day, with the heated seats.
Then the fun part of the day commenced, driving the Grand Pacific Drive. Advantages of inclement weather – very few other cars, no pushbikes, plenty of parking spots. It was a great, leisurely drive winding through the National Park. Some of our group then headed home while the rest of us headed to Kamay National Park Kurnell. As we arrived the sun came out and we had a great view of the bay and the whale bone sculptures. A short drive to Talotta’s Pizza was a good way to end the day. Awesome food while surrounded in car memorabilia.
Many thanks to everyone who left the warmth of a cosy home to join the day out. Due to Covid, it might be a while before we get to enjoy another one.
Winter had arrived as we assembled at the old Toll Gates at Berowra and so had the local highway patrol, not that they bothered us. As a warning whilst waiting for the start time to click around we witnessed hundreds of bicyclists passing by, all going in the same direction as us. With the driver briefing completed we headed out onto the Old Pacific Highway. I must say it’s no mean feat to stay on the Old Pacific Highway as all signs and the GPS lead to the M1 Pacific Motorway. Even more complex are the series of intersections leading to Calga, Mt White, Peats Ridge and on to Mangrove Central.
Everyone had some interesting passing moves to accommodate the bike riders on the sometimes very narrow Old Pacific Highway. Eventually we arrived at the two lane 110 kmh area and opened the lungs of the Zeds so they could finally appreciate the cold air fuel mix.
First stop was Jerry’s Café where we met a 100 or so motor bike riders enjoying a coffee. It was a machine extravaganza for all concerned, although a lone D-Type Jaguar seemed to attract much attention as did many of the bikes.
From here the trivia questions began. There was much celebration that the prizes for the winners would be some very special Presidents Run jams and John’s much sort after Tomato Chilli Relish. Some of the teams (knowing what the treats were) wanted to buy these on the spot. Adding to the mix was the offer for participants to buy answers to questions. Arriving in Wollombi the race was on to search out the trivia answers. I couldn’t believe how competitive some of the ladies were! Some members fell in love with the charm of Wollombi and this will be a favourite place to return to. Leaving Wollombi our overall speed increased significantly to the delight of the navigators (NOT) and all had great fun on the never ending corners for a little over an hour. The Zeds really got a workout on this road….
Arriving at Harrigan’s Irish Pub for lunch we were able to park in a discrete Zed parking area. The hotel were organised with our tables ready. Everyone had a hearty meal and then with much anticipation it was time to announce the trivia winners. The results were very interestingly as we had a draw for first place with Mark and Kathy and Jamie and Joanne both dropping only ½ a point who received a very delectable selection of the President Run prizes. Third were Brad and Darrelle, forth Andrew and Sophie, followed by Andrew and Ester. The President then made sure that all attending received some of the treats as a thank you for supporting the event.
The afternoon saw us all distribute to various places across the Hunter Valley for wine tasting and then onto the Foghorn boutique brewery for a tour, I believe some of the ladies enjoyed bubbles and cheese. I could not believe how good the Slatted Magpie Porters was and the Ginger and chilli beer from Foghorn were. Just amazing! Dinner was arranged at The Mighty Pub (Previously called Potters) with all enjoying excellent food and company.
Sunday morning we travelled the short distance to the Hunter Recreational Flying Club for a huge breakfast and then a tour of the hangers and Flying Club member’s aeroplanes. Joy flights in club member’s planes was an enormous success. The smiles were intoxicating particularly when Lawson was offered the pilot’s seat to fly the plane, his younger brother Cam was also given the same opportunity.
Of course the best dressed Zed club members wore the President’s Run commemorative shirt!
It’s always good to see new comers come along with Andrew and Sophie, Mark and Kathy and Scott all attending. Scott certainly kept me honest negotiating the corners at ridiculously sensible speeds (Ha!). Anyway thanks to everyone that attended and made a positive contribution to making this a great event.
The day started at the Pheasants Nest Service Centre, to reduce the timeline of a long day out. There were a few introductions to new faces to our social events and a surprise new addition to the Twyman family of cars.
The convoy of 10 Z cars headed off and regrouped at Mittagong Information Centre. Perfect spot for a photo opportunity, as we had the carpark to ourselves. Barbara used the short rest stop to accumulate a few more brochures and maps on possible holidays or car events.
It was a beautiful drive towqrds Wombeyan Caves and out into the countryside. A few cars diverted but quickly rejoined the convoy. All was going great until the road expectantly became unsealed. Not a big issue, just added to the adventure.
The Joadja Distillery is positioned in a valley that encompasses historic stories of the shale mining era. The tour guide was extremely well informed and made the history lesson very comical. We all enjoyed lots of Gin, Whiskey and Brandy tastings and made several purchases.
Off to Bowral for lunch at the Mill. Now that Covid restrictions have eased, new food outlets have opened that may also be worth trying at a later date.
Thanks to everyone who joined in the days activities and for Barbara’s suggestion of the event
Sunday 28 March
Big Daddy’s Burger bar was again the meeting place for our March Event to the Southern Highlands. The weather could not have been better. Members gathered for the 8.30 start. A good representation of Z models were shining in the morning sun.
First stop, Twin Servos at Pheasants nest, a leisurely 30-minute drive where 3 other cars joined in. Off we go down the freeway toward Mittagong. Then on to Bowral where heads were turning young and old as the now 12 Zeds drove through the main street in formation.
The roads started to open out and so did some of our Members. Sheep wash Road led on to the Illawarra highway and down through the Robertson Township. The local motorcycle police officer was highly active in the area which made us all feel very safe. Luckily, he was so busy dealing with others that he left us alone.
We arrived at the Tree top walk to plenty of parking. We were able to all park in formation which made some good photo opportunities for the group. The views were spectacular as long as a little side to side movement of the walking platform didn’t worry you. Some chose to sit out the walk and have a good old chat instead. Either way, everyone was happy. Just because our Zeds run a little rich and are a little over the odds when it comes to CO2 emissions, it doesn’t mean that we can’t be environmentalists. Luckily, there were plenty of trees around to filter the fumes!
Time to head back to Robertson for Lunch. Slight delay as the local cows blocked the roadway but were soon encouraged off into the bush, then it was a quick stop at Carrington Falls. This was an unexpected highlight; the recent rains made the falls spectacular. The last time we went to a waterfall in the Southern Highlands, Member Barry Godfrey was heard saying that his morning shower had more water flow! Good one Baz.
Lunch was at the Robertson Public House and kitchen, otherwise known as the Robbo Pub!! The food was exceptional, Prices were good and the drinks cold. What more do you need? Nice likeminded people who share the love of Zeds. Well, we had that too.
A big thank you to Brad and Darelle for organising a perfect day. A big thank you to the members and guests who came along to make it a success. Spread the word about our events and let’s see if we can get even more members enjoying our Club outings.
The February AGM led to the election of a revised Committee. The new committee decided to try something a little different by organising a Member brunch at Havilland Park, Warragamba dam. This time slot worked with quite a few members who had other commitments a little later in the day but were still able to attend.
Members started to arrive just before the 9am starting time and quickly swung the BBQ into action with Sausages, Bacon and eggs all sizzling away. We were blessed with the weather and this was complimented by a large clean shelter capable of seating all members.
We had a great roll up of members, past, present, and even a few new members signing up for this year. With over 40 people and 20 cars it was considered a great success and members seemed to enjoy the whole experience.
A big thank you to all who supported the event and we look forward to seeing you at the next event in late March.
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.