Presidents Report - April 2016

alan vellaHello All,

What a great time was the 2016 Mustang Nationals in Queensland. There was a total of 28-30 NSW Memberships attending, with around 25 Mustangs making the journey up the coast road from as far south as Canberra at different times, to all meet on the Gold Coast for the event. With some experiencing car troubles before they even left their home region, it was comforting to know that all involved pitched in, got the vehicles running again, and made it up to Queensland in one piece! With some of us stopping off at Coffs Harbour on the Wednesday afternoon for the night on the way up, we found that the meal in the Pub next door to our motel was fantastic! And by the way, so was the beer! Unfortunately, every B Double Semi that travelled along the Pacific Hwy that night, had their J Brake on, and somehow managed to travel right through our hotel rooms. In other words, not much sleep that night.

The Port Macquarie crew and our magazine editor, David Lodge, and a couple of others met up with us at the front of our hotel for the trek up together in convoy. With all of us managing to arrive in Queensland in one piece at varying times at the Watermark Hotel. First thing was to check in, and then a wind down in the social area of the hotel before we head out to dinner. The hotel accommodation was excellent, and so were the evening functions and meals that the Queenslanders arranged for the duration of the weekends festivities. In fact the whole event was fantastic and the Queensland club deserve a huge round of applause. Fridays meet and greet was a buffet style arrangement as was Saturday’s themed Hawaiian night. Sunday’s presentation dinner was a semi-formal affair, so no thongs were allowed unlike the previous night’s venture!

Some of the competition in the Concours’ judging on the Saturday was tough, and the same can be said for the Sunday Display and Show and Shine participants. There were many beautiful cars on display. David & Yvonne Lodge were our sole NSW Concours’ representatives, and were awarded Silver against some pretty stiff competition from vehicles that are seldom or never driven. Allan & Denise Spackman received an award for their 1965 Honey Gold Coupe in the Display Judged arena, as did Paul and Sue Lucich with their 2001 Mustang Cobra Convertible also in Display Judged. David Mierisch received an award in Show and Shine for his 1965 Shelby GT350 Replica, and Wayne & Wendy Pattison also received 2 awards in the Show and Shine for their modified orange 1969 Mach1.

Our ever faithful Treasurer Phil Preston put forward the presentation at the Sunday evening Presentation Dinner for next year’s 2017 Nationals in Wollongong with nothing but positive response. Phil did a wonderful job in doing this, and received much applause from the crowd. Whilst Phil was giving the presentation, our lovely lady members that attended, were distributing around the tables, some information leaflets that our very own David Lodge had formatted, and our in house printer Ken Buckland had kindly printed, highlighting the basics of the 2017 Wollongong Nationals. These Info Leaflets were also handed out to the other State President’s for distribution and presentation to their members back in their home states. The feedback and positive support for Wollongong received over the course of the entire 2016 Nationals weekend in Queensland is nothing but positive, and many interstaters are very keen to book ASAP! I would like to officially thank Russell & Sandra Whitney, the Committee and members of MOCA Queensland for putting together an excellent 2016 Nationals Weekend. All who attended had a fantastic time, with many old friendships reignited, and many new friendships formed. You all did a great job and Thank you from MOCA NSW!

Folks it’s going to be a “Big One”, (that’s the Wollongong Nationals in 2017), with Registrations and Hotel bookings opening on 1st June 2016, and the closing date being 31st December. For those interested in participating, you must Register for the event, and book your accommodation via the Nationals Secretary Helen Lynch. Sorry, but you will be unable to book direct with the Hotel! All the booking details, registration forms and event information etc. will be published in the May edition of the Pony Express. So remember, Bookings and registrations open on June 1st 2016. Don’t forget, as the hotel will fill quickly, and remember, “You snooze, you lose”! It would be a shame if you missed out because you left it to the last minute! There shall be some info leaflets on hand at the general meetings over the coming months for any member who would like one.

One of the many benefits of association with other car clubs, is that we are often invited to some of their events! And in this particular instance, I have recently been contacted by another Ford Club that have an Annual Drag Racing day at Western Sydney International Dragway. They have offered us 10 spots for Sunday the 7th August 2016. The cost at this stage is $200 per car for the whole day, and I am sure that you will be able to get around 10-15 ¼ mile runs in throughout the duration of the day. The maximum ET allowable is 11 seconds. If anyone is interested, please email me or call me to express your interest in participating in an event that our club hasn’t done for many years!

On a sombre note, I received a phone call that one of our very early members Garry Jacobson has passed away through illness on Monday evening 4th April. Garry was member no.3, and was a very welcoming man to those new to the club. I remember when I first joined the club 23 years ago, Garry was one of the very first members that I befriended. He was always a happy and cheerful man, and along with his partner Ellie, and would always be out and about in their Black 71 Mustang Convertible. When I used to scour the many swap meets throughout the state of NSW in the early years, I would quite often bump into Garry and Ellie at one and we would share quite a few laughs throughout our chats. They have been respected members within the Mustang community here in NSW for many years! I would like to extend on behalf of the club, our sincere and deepest condolences to Garry and Ellie’s family through this difficult time. Our thoughts are with you all throughout this most difficult of times.

I would also like to offer a huge welcome to the many new members to our wonderful Club who have joined over the last Month. Welcome Aboard! And we look forward to seeing you at a future meeting, show or run. Please come up and say Hi!

‘Til next month my friends!

Alan Vella