Queensland Raceways has a real knack for putting on fantastic theme days with its calendar chock-full of everything for the fans of all cars, whether US, Euro, Japanese or Aussie. This yearís All Aussie ĎFair Dinkumí Day at Lakeside Park was as fair dinkum as it gets with close to 500 cars taking part in the Show Ďní Shine and on-track shenanigans with Ďhappy lapsí sometimes turning into impromptu rolling-start drag races with Lakesideís main straight serving up loud, fast and smokey fun for all the family.
Spawned from the annual All Aussie Fatherís Day in September, Marchís version is fast on the way to becoming one of the biggest single-theme events in Queensland, rivalling even the massive All American Thanksgiving Day, also held at Lakeside.
With entry and on-track session prices at $10 and VIP packages for $40 itís no wonder the number of cars in attendance was large; the only downside was that some cruise sessions became gridlocked around the back of the course making it hard for some of the more highly modified machines to keep cool.
The family element of the day was also obvious Ė cars with backseats full of kids (mostly smiling) were tearing up the main straight. Numerous teens in the pits were trying to blag rides in anything hot with most drivers happy to oblige in scaring the shit out of them. Clearly the message for the day to kids was Ďdonít get in a car with a stranger unless itís fast.í
As a weekend distraction the All Aussie ĎFair Dinkumí Day does its job spectacularly.
Interestingly the All Aussie theme seems to produce a shift away from the old Ford vs.
Holden mentality toward a celebration of locally made cars. Given the end is nigh for our iconic nameplates, watching Aussie cars scramble round a race track reminds us of what weíve lost, but also what we have.
ďIíVE HAD the HQ for about seven months now, I bought it off Steve Hay whoís a circuit driver. Itís a 6-litre LS2 twin-turbo with 760hp (566kW) at the wheels with a nine-inch rear end and itís just a really well-built thing and just lovely to drive.
ďThe XY Iíve had for five years, it was 2010 Summernats Grand Champion (Joe Loreís BLOWJO) and had a big blower on it. Itís a 393ci that Duke Hoffman (wearing cap) rebuilt so Iíve brought him out here today so he can have a drive in it. Itís got a V8 Supercar injection manifold and makes 500hp (375kW) at the wheels. I like it because itís different.
Itís not a GT and I didnít want it to be a GT replica, there are tons of those around already, I want my cars to be different.Ē
ďITíS A TRIBUTE to Colin Bond and Harry Firth and all those guys from the era, and to Leo Geoghegan who could get in anything and drive it. Those guys were never given the recognition they deserve so I want to do this basically for Colin Bond.
ďWhen I first bought this I wanted to do everything period correct, I wanted to hand do the livery and all the parts are period correct like with reverse HK centres on the rear wheels.
ďToday I came out to take it for a strop Ė itís period correct Ė thereís nothing else here like it Ė itís not a street rod. Itís just an exciting day when you come out here and have a little fun, and it doesnít matter what youíre in, itís just about having fun.Ē
ďIíVE HAD a few Commodores, VKs, a VN, VP SS, but I chose the Ford for cheap power. Iíve had it for five years and have done a lot of work on it. Itís got six-piston front and four-piston rear Brembo calipers, a Stage 3 intercooler, throttle body relocation, bigger injectors, upgraded input shaft, four-inch exhaust, Tein coilovers and Koya wheels with semi-slicks to set it up for the track. It runs on E85 and makes 659 horsepower at the wheels with 1394Nm of torque. Apart from that itís pretty stock, even the aftermarket gauges Iíve put into the factory location just to keep it looking tidy and original even though itís modified. I canít complain, it handles well and goes hard and is heaps of fun on the track.Ē
ďTHE VK was the first car I ever had so I wanted something similar and always loved the Group A. Iíve only just got this on the road, Iíve just recently done it up, the majority of the work I did myself and my father is a spray painter so that came in handy. Iím really happy with the way itís come up but thereís a couple of little things I want to finish off but I think thatís normal with everyoneís car thereís always something to do. I put a fuel-injected 355ci engine and Turbo 700 trans in and itís got Pedders suspension all round and with the 19-inch Simmons wheels, itís exactly the look I was after.
Havenít been on the track today, we just came out to have look. Maybe next time.Ē
ďI BOUGHT it as a project car, all it was was just a shell, so we built it from scratch. Custom Steelworks gave us a hand and it took about 12 months to build. We bought the car with a rebuilt 440ci motor but when we went to put it in the car, we pulled it apart and saw it was full of water, the guyíd left it sitting in the rain so Kevin Kent on the Gold Coast rebuilt the motor and itís been going strong ever since. We took it out to the drags and it did a 10.80second run with nitrous, itís been mini-tubbed so we can fit big rubber for the strip. First car I ever had was a VG ute and it took a long time to get another one but itís been worth it.
My kids, Jesse and Billy, love it too.Ē