View Full Version : They Raced Anything!

06-12-2011, 10:58 PM
New Zealand motor racing wasn't always the slick production we enjoy today. There was a time when a bit of straight public road doubled as a drag strip, a closed off gravel stretch was a hillclimb and two cones on a beach made a beach race track.

Drivers took all manner of creations to Pukekawa, not far from Pukekohe, and thrashed them round a dirt track carved from the paddock of an understanding farmer. They were great meetings, friendly and relaxed, and the racing was hard and fast.

The following were taken some time in the late 60s and show the wonderful machinery that was pressed into service.







06-12-2011, 11:02 PM
This thing had a big Weber carb stuck on the front of the head - can't remember whether there was a U-shaped manifold or a turned-around head. The old oval-window VW up the top had a Corvair flat 6 grafted onto it.



Steve Holmes
06-12-2011, 11:43 PM
Fantastic thread Shane! I love it. Do you have any idea what people pay these days for a 35/36 Ford 3 window coupe! Hugely desirable.

Greg Stokes
06-13-2011, 12:39 AM
I just about fell off my chair when I saw that three window!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! Pukekawa was organised by Pukekohe Hot Rod Club before the Meremere dirt track days I beleive.....

06-13-2011, 04:01 AM
Wow, I spent many a Sunday afternoon out there, racing, fixing cars, taking the odd photo, helping Louie the Leopard to drink his Rum.
Great days with a great bunch of guys. With a couple of Waikaraka saloons in those photos I am guessing they are from around 1968/1969.
Yes, Pukekohe Hot Rod Club, the group basically became the Meremere Dirt Track Club which is still going strong today.

06-13-2011, 04:07 AM
Fantastic thread Shane! I love it. Do you have any idea what people pay these days for a 35/36 Ford 3 window coupe! Hugely desirable.

We were building up a 1937 Ford Coupe for Pukekawa around late 1967, bought for $75, but sold it nearly finished to some guys who wanted to build it into a stockcar. Sold it less engine for $120 and it lasted one night at Waikaraka! That 3 window wouldn't have cost more than $100 less engine back then.

Rod Grimwood
06-13-2011, 06:41 AM
Wonder if that VW is the original that Doug Bremner built, think built about 3 of them. He was a top engineer,driver and all round nice guy. One of them still does the occassional club rallysprint now and is still competitive.

bob homewood
06-13-2011, 07:42 AM
No Doug had that car for a few Years ,then sold it To Rodney Atchison who last time I was talking to him still owns it
On the Pukekawa subject , I think one time out there I spotted a 1800 Land crab motor and front end somehow shoved into the front of a Mini ,some one will remember ,was Parker the guy that owned it ?

Roger Dowding
10-30-2021, 07:25 AM
Yes even Croydon Thompson - the guy who made mag wheels in NZ, in the 1970's - probably the first guy to do so - ran a very cool Ford F100 Customised " Pick up Truck ' at grass sprints.

Riverhead around 1971 ..

- 70723