Presidents Report October 2010

Our Club's Senior Statesman, and 20 year member, Vic Fairhurst passed away on Saturday morning, 2nd October. He had been battling cancer for some time. Vic was a quiet, kindly man. I have fond memories of chatting to him together with his wife Maureen many years ago on Market Day in the township of Berry. Half an hour later, Vic was forced to take evasive action in his black Fastback to avoid a motorist who cut him off on the Princes Highway. His car then hit the kerb hard creating substantial damage, fortunately Vic and Maureen were both OK, and the other driver took off, never to be seen again.

It was a long time before the Mustang made it back to the road. Vic was very much part of the Wollongong members' group and was always involved in the annual Wollongong events which the club ran in the past. As well as the black 69 Fastback with the VF plates, Vic drove a red 1971 Grande as well as a very original mid 60's Falcon. We will certainly miss him. On behalf of every member, I extend our sympathy and best wishes to Maureen and her family.

Thank you to all of the Members who supported the committee, the Merrylands RSL and the Holroyd City Council by attending the Merrylands Muster. This is one of the major events on the club calendar and it takes a major effort from the entire committee to make it work on the day. This time, we were fortunate to have the weather gods on side and that certainly makes a huge difference. Congratulations to all trophy winners on the day - we will be presenting the concours awards at the October meeting. I am always impressed by the high standard of our concours entrants and the number of our members who take the time and make the huge effort to bring their Mustangs up to an exceptionally high standard.

It was only a couple of months since I was talking about the clubs public liability insurance and the policy that we took out to cover us through to the beginning of October. Well, here we are in October and it's time to organize cover for the next 12 months. Once again, our past president David Livian has been assisting via his contacts within the CMC and it appears that they have organized a deal with a WA insurance broker who is entering the eastern states car club scene with an offer that will save our club nearly $2,400 for this coming year. In the past we have been tied to a premium based on the number of members in the club, and of course, at $5.00 per head for 590 plus members - it soon adds up to big money. This new provider charges a basic flat fee, fantastic news for us and long may it last!

Public liability, for those new to the club, was thrown into chaos a few years ago following a number of deaths at various car club speed events around the country. The insurance companies all closed ranks and backed away from the entire category. Prices for cover sky- rocketed and options narrowed. Gradually the market is settling back to its previous levels. Public liability cover is something that an incorporated body such as ours simply must have.

I understand that the members who attended the Muscle Car Masters had an excellent day watching the historic racing machinery in action at Eastern Creek. I am sorry that I missed it. Many thank to Steve Jackman who was the man in charge on the day. The events team commented that they plan to make this day a much bigger focus on the 2011 calendar.

We were lucky to score that perfect day for the Mustang Muster, but we certainly scored a dud for the Brumbies run to Luskintyre to see the Tiger Moths! We were grateful that a group of brave souls made the journey under very threatening Sydney skies to the top of the F3 and then on to the Luskintyre Airfield, where we were greeted on arrival by Barney, a most interesting gentleman and very experienced flyer, who threw open the doors and made us feel most welcome. Unfortunately the poor weather had stopped the usual flying program, but we could wander through the hangers and then Barney walked and talked us around the aircraft restoration area where 14 Tigers are in various stages of rebirth. He explained how the rebuilt aircraft are now much stronger and lighter thanks to modern fabrics (originally the airframe was covered with linen) and laser cutting techniques. Barney, much to his delight, was taken for a very brisk ride around the airfield perimeter by John Bailey in the yellow Shelby. Finally, off we went to Morpeth for a browse around the shops of the historic town before finishing the day at the Campbell's Warehouse for a coffee prior to heading home. In spite of the grey skies, it was a most enjoyable day.

The Mustang Nationals in Newcastle at Easter 2012 are still 19 months away. The core components- accommodation, function venue and car show venue are all firmly locked into place. Behind the scenes work is continuing on the logo, as well as on our major presentation to the attendees at the Nationals in Queensland next Easter. Keith Speer is sorting through ideas for the events merchandise. The Merrylands RSL and Shannons have indicated that they will support us with sponsorship, which is indeed fantastic news. Rob Taylor, who has his Keyman business in a number of Newcastle shopping centres, has commenced talking about the event to his local contacts such as the press and radio folk. I have appreciated the input from a number of members with excellent ideas that can be incorporated into the weekend program or into either sale merchandise or the goodies bag. Please keep those suggestions coming. You will be regularly hearing from me about the Nationals as we count down to Easter 2012!

With Christmas now only months away, we will wrap up the finances October 2010 from this years All American Day and make our annual donation from that event to the Westmead Children's Hospital Oncology Unit at the December meeting. It always takes time for the sponsors funds to make their way into our account.

The events team will be talking about our Club's Christmas function at Club Umina during the coming weeks. We will be combining a car show (Host's Choice prizes) with our own function.

Also, for those of us who enjoy a weekend away in our Mustang, note the following date - February 26 and 27th and put it into your planner. This is the weekend that our Canberra friends are planning a Mustang Car Show in the ACT. They are negotiating a special accommodation package at the Pavilion Hotel. More details will follow.

A very warm welcome to all of our new members. We will look forward to seeing you out on the various club activities enjoying your Mustang.

David Francis

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