Goodbye Pork Pie, hello Invercargill

SUPER COOPER: Tristan Bailey in his Goodbye Pork Pie persona as he drove his Mini into Invercargill.
SUPER COOPER: Tristan Bailey in his Goodbye Pork Pie persona as he drove his Mini into Invercargill.

An Invercargill invasion of Mini Coopers signalled the finish of the 2013 Easter Pork Pie Charity Run down through New Zealand yesterday in a fundraising effort that pulled in more than $168,000 for Leukaemia and Blood Cancer New Zealand.

For Invercargill sisters Wendy Heaslip and Pam Turnbull, the final leg into the city was a homecoming.

The sisters brought "Mavis" the Mini to Kaitaia to start the drive to the south with 47 other cars last month, retracing the journey made famous in the 1981 Kiwi cult classic Goodbye Pork Pie.

On her way out of Alexandra on Tuesday, Mrs Heaslip said the trip was fantastic fun for the her Southern Outlaws team, which had raised $1984.

The sisters first did a road trip in a Mini Cooper 30 years ago.

After years of driving an eight-seater van, Mrs Heaslip splurged on her beloved 1994 model that was reminiscent of one of her first cars.

"It's been great, amazing, wonderful weather," she said.

While some teams endured breakdowns from Kaitaia to the south, they had travelled "in luxury" in Mavis.

"We've got 1200 songs on the iPod so we've sung the whole way," she said.

While seeing the North Island with the other nationwide teams was a great experience, they had been looking forward to returning to the uncrowded country roads of the south, she said.

"It's been great to come back."

Mrs Heaslip said there was no particular reason for supporting the charity, but she had loved the Goodbye Pork Pie movie and had always wanted to do a similar road trip.

The Southland Times