Crowds flock to Crank Up event

LAUREN HAYES
Last updated 05:00 28/01/2013

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Sunshine and steam engines proved a winning combination at this year's Crank Up event, with massive crowds turning out for the vintage machinery festival at the weekend.

Crank Up convener Neil Irwin said the good weather had helped draw in a big crowd across the two-day event.

"We had a brilliant day [on Saturday], probably one of the biggest crowds we've had since Sir Edmund Hillary was here."

He had not yet sat down to add up crowd numbers, but believed the event attracted thousands of spectators.

Mr Irwin believed one of the most popular displays was a group of 50 Model T Fords, dating from the early 1900s.

It was impressive to see so many of the century-old cars in one place, but the event had also offered entertainment for those who were not interested in machinery, he said.

This year's special guest, Olympic rower Nathan Cohen, was in demand with visitors.

"Nathan Cohen has been such a hit, particularly with the kids. They're all getting autographs and photos and hanging on to the gold medal."

Mr Irwin said the Crank Up team would spend today cleaning up before returning to work and tomorrow.

Plans for next year's Crank Up event, which would highlight 100 years of tractors in New Zealand, were already under way, he said. lauren.hayes@stl.co.nz

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