Big field of classics to race

STU PIDDINGTON
Last updated 05:00 06/02/2013
steve parker
MYTCHALL BRANSGROVE/ Fairfax NZ
WEEKEND WARRIOR: Timaru's Steve Parker is looking forward to racing at this weekend's Southern Classic at Levels with 36 other cars on the grid in his class.

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Timaru's Steve Parker will be keeping a keen eye on his mirrors and will have to have his wits about him when he hits the tarmac at the Southern Classic this weekend.

The small saloon car class at the Timaru International Motor Raceway will see the biggest field with 37 cars to line up on the grid, ensuring plenty of action.

Parker will be driving Reg Cook's former New Zealand championship winning Nissan Sunny in the historic ShellSport Championship.

Matt Jackson has restored the car, taking it back to the shell and returning the original decals, while Wayne Murdoch has worked on the motor for Parker.

"It should be great fun for drivers and spectators. There will be plenty of ducking down the inside and outside with 37 cars in our field."

Parker said he would be racing hard and expects the others will also want to be first across the line.

The motor racing event has attracted close to 200 entries, with some real classics among them and something to suit every fan.

Since the first event in 2006 at Levels it has proved popular and this year 18 locals will be mixing it up with the international field.

Timaru's Bruce Tinnelly will be behind the wheel of his 1968 Mark 2 Lotus Cortina, a car originally imported into New Zealand by speedway star Ronnie Moore.

St Andrews' Jim Little will be in a 1972 Chrysler Valiant RT Charger, having raced the same type of car for over 40 years.

His well-known mustard-coloured No 8 Charger will remain in the shed, however, as it has become too valuable to race.

Timaru's motor racing man for all seasons, John Hepburn, will be turning out in his HQ Holden Monaro among the V8s and muscle cars.

Kevin Pateman will get behind the wheel of his 1993 Ford Telstar, Lawrence Brown his 1971 Hillman Avenger, while Waimate's Rob Aikman has a 1972 Holden Torano.

There are also a number of vintage and historic pre-1960 cars, Formula Libre single-seaters and Formula Juniors.

Also returning to the track after a 26-year absence will be the former Trevor Crowe V8 Toyota Starlet.

In the vintage class, Avon Hyde's small but fast Austin Special will be mixing it with the Edelbrock Special V8 and the CAE Sprinter. There will also be Mustangs and Camaros appearing, along with Canadian Jack Ondrack in his TVR.

As well as a great mix of marques, competitors will come from all parts of the globe including Britain, Hong Kong, Monaco, Italy and the United States.

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- © Fairfax NZ News

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