Restored skiff wins over boat show judges

A "real bloke's boat" zoomed past immaculate sailboats, painstakingly restored cutters and floating antiques of all varieties to win the overall prize at the 15th annual New Zealand Antique & Classic Boat show at Lake Rotoiti.

The Jens Hansen Cup was awarded to Christchurch man Darryl Maffey's boat Willow. Mr Maffey bought the shallow-beam V bottom skiff in May last year from an elderly gentleman in Christchurch, and did it up himself over the winter. The boat is his first project.

He fibreglassed the deck, gave it a coat of paint in grey and white, installed lighting and a bilge pump, and added a touch of wooden trim: "It just makes it a little bit classier than just a dinghy."

PEDAL POWER:  Lincoln MacKenzie, of Nelson, pedals  Sam Laidlaw’s creation on Lake Rotoiti. The ‘‘Spoonaker’’  is made from an old bicycle with dessert spoons bolted onto the wheels.
PEDAL POWER: Lincoln MacKenzie, of Nelson, pedals Sam Laidlaw’s creation on Lake Rotoiti. The ‘‘Spoonaker’’ is made from an old bicycle with dessert spoons bolted onto the wheels.

Mr Maffey said he bought the boat as "an inclusive thing" for his two sons, aged 11 and 13, to get involved with. He said the family spent a lot of time fishing from it.

"It's kind of a platform for fishing and hunting. It can still tow a sea-biscuit and that kind of thing."

Judge John Harris said he and fellow judges Ben Cox and Craig Groome had been unanimous on their decision to give Willow the prize, saying they all liked that it was a "real bloke's boat".

"It's a typical man's weekend-away-fishing, duck-shooting boat."

He said the boat was a style that would not have cost too much, and the judges liked that "everyone could have one".

The prize for best restoration went to Andiamo, owned by Tauranga man Marty Fuller. The powerboat was built in 1949 and had a regular presence at Lake Rotoiti more than 60 years ago.

Powered by a Dodge 6 engine and known as one of the fastest boats on the lake, it was then called The Yellow Boat, but it fell into disrepair before the Fullers bought it as a derelict in 2008. Mr Fuller's son, Richard, restored it and relaunched it in 2012.

Nelson's Iron Duke Sea Scouts attended the show for the first time in recent years, bringing their boat Arrow and Ducky the mascot. Cub leader Peter Kortegast said he had spotted lots of "old salty guys" who were former Sea Scout leaders and members in the crowd.

Wakefield aviation enthusiast Bill Reid wowed the crowd on Saturday when he flew low over the lake in his restored Avro Anson World War II bomber. The Reid family took 10 years to restore the bomber.

On the water more than 120 clinkers, steam launches, classic motorboats and sailing dinghies took part in the weekend event.

Founder and co-organiser of the classic boat show Pete Rainey said holding the show a month earlier was popular with visitors, with some enjoying a day out at the lake after attending the Marlborough Wine and Food Festival.

Other award winning boats were:

Best New Craft: Boat 67 , a 4.1-metre ultra-light ply dinghy with total design and build by the owners, John and Dianne Macbeth, Todd Valley, Nelson.

Best Restoration: Andiamo, a 5.63m power boat built in 1949 and based at Lake Rotoiti (NI) over 60 years ago, where it was one of the fastest boats on the lake, owned by Mary Fuller of Tauranga

Port Nelson House Parts best rowed craft: Inverie, a 3.65m 1947 traditional clinker dinghy, owned by the Picton Clinker & Classic Boat Club.

CWF Hamilton trophy for best jet propelled boat: Potential, a 4.5m Hamilton jet 30XL, built in 1964 and now owned by Geoff Neutze of Christchurch.

Johnson Family Trophy for the best sail powered craft: Julie, a 4.26m X-class built in 1950, owned by Guy Manning of Nelson.

Mathieson/Jeffcott trophy for best motor powered craft: Matariki, a 5m launch built in 1965 and restored in 2014, owned by Marlene & Peter Crapper of Picton.

Best outboard motor boat: Miss Molly, a 3.96m Clinker runabout built in 1963 and owned by Dick & Rita Hall of Picton.

Eventiac best themed display: Thunderbird, a 4.57m 1972-73 jet boat, bought as a bare hull for $500 in 2006, returned to red and white colour scheme and relaunched in 2006; entry included music and costumes, owned by Edward Wicken of Christchurch.

Ron Culley trophy for best steam boat: Tecumseh, a 5.4m steam launch built in 2003 by Myron Givets, owned by Tony Collins of North Otago.

People's Choice: Vanquish, a 5.8m powerboat, a new build in the style of a 1930s-40s gentleman's racer, owned by Dave Deavoll of Christchurch.