View Full Version : From Shelby Mustang to Dirt Track Racer, the final Death.

09-20-2011, 08:01 AM
Does anyone know, or can remember the story of a 68 GT500 Shelby Mustang that crash out the back or east tamaki, AKL on new years eve in 69 or 70 in which both the driver and passanger died, the car was then sold as a write off to Brett Wilson a motor importer in Hastings/Napier, he put the 428 Shelby motor and trans into his T-Bucket and drag raced it and sold the shell to Trevor Grey in Tauranga and he built it into a dirt track saloon car with the ex Urquhart brothers 429 Cammer boat engine fitted!! now this was a near new and expensive car back then!! I remember as a kid on my push bike outside Dick Davidson's workshop on the corner of Cameron and Chadwick roads in Greerton, Tauranga watching them work on it!! The reason i bought this story up is i wonder how many rare and exspensive cars ended up dying a final death on the dirt tracks of New Zealand(and Australia for that matter)


Dale Mathers

Rod Grimwood
09-20-2011, 08:10 PM
This Capri was only about 6 months old when it was stolen and ended up torched. It was a 1600 GT and the motor and gearbox were gone. I think that either accidents or thiefs supplied a few of the newer model cars for speedway via the insurance companies getting what they could for them. We converted it to V6 and gear and Millens ran it for a while and then I did some skids in it and sold it to another bloke in Auckland don't know what happened to it.

Steve Holmes
09-20-2011, 08:13 PM
Dale, that sounds interesting. Where is Gavin (pallmall) when you need him. He'll likely have photos.

Rod, was that Capri ever V8 powered?

09-20-2011, 08:37 PM
I don't think I have any photos of the Trevor Grey Mustang. Many of the more exotic, and probably some of the less exotic, speedway saloons were originally from accident and fire damaged cars. McConnichie Mustang was another example, built from a very squashed car.

Jac Mac
09-20-2011, 09:04 PM
Woodsie's mustang stock car originated from an Insurance write off & ended up using parts from a Genuine Shelby in the buildup as I mentioned in another thread, at one point I bought a genuine Boss 302 body shell that had been burnt out & was written off that ended up on the speedway later, several mustangs/camaros etc in the south were built up from other insurance writeoff deals..... once the space frames came in they found it more cost effective to just bring in a rear clip & front guards

Rod Grimwood
09-21-2011, 03:15 AM
Steve, It was V6 when we had it with triple throat IDA, but I did hear of someone putting a V8 into later on. Last I heard it had gone to the Mount, this is way back in mid 70s
The V6 was actually pretty tractable for the dirt and she went alright. Got some other photos somewhere with Jim in the Monaro giving a hard time when Rod won the 30 lap GP race at Waikaraka. I think the Firebird that Kendall put together for Paton-Black was another stolen job. Scotty ended up with it after the Yanks and others had played with it.

09-21-2011, 03:52 AM
There are photos of all those cars in the Speedway Saloon thread. I must scan and post the Peter Woods Mustang photos soon.

10-02-2011, 11:47 PM
I haven't had time to find the others, but here is one of the Peter Woods car.


Jac Mac
10-03-2011, 05:31 AM
That is the one & only Peter Woods Mustang [ looks like a later pic in the blue/silver/white colours ], any rebody or chassis changes were done by subsequent owners, I built those 'Rally Escort' type rear flares on it after the first season, they were made from 1/8" steel plate with 1" steel pipe edging, Why, I got sick of touching that area up between meets so figured the wheel arches needed to be able to take a hit....:) they were and did...saved an awful lot of tyres as well

10-03-2011, 10:52 AM
I saw Peter Woods Mustang on the dirt on a few occasions prior to Peter going to the Commodore. I recall that Andrew Kenton of Timaru (KTC Marine fame) ran the what I think was the ex Woods Mustang for a season or two in the mid 1980's.

Jack, you must have had a fair involvement with a lot of Southland cars, circuit and speedway over the years. It'd be fascinating to hear more about it all if you have the time.

Jac Mac
10-03-2011, 08:03 PM
I left Charlton shortly after the Firebird/Camaro was finished & running, the Mustang was first sold to Ron Winton of Dunedin, not sure where it went from there, I seldom attended speedway meetings, after working on the cars during the week, sometimes into the early hours of the morning, it became a bit depressing to see them being trashed again in short order, although there was the first meeting for the Firebird/Camaro that I was quite glad I did go down to Riverside... saved me a few $$$$:)

Steve Holmes
10-16-2011, 02:26 AM
I haven't had time to find the others, but here is one of the Peter Woods car.


This is the one buried in one of the Boulton families paddocks.

John McKechnie
10-05-2012, 11:52 PM
I have 2 contributions-
1-John Hayman built up Fred, a HK Monaro that had been stolen , stripped and the body was then bulldozed flat and buried.It was recovered and jacked back up to correct shape-almost.Used always look a bit strange, .That was for Waikaraka Park in early 70s-Rod Grimwood would remember.
2-5 years ago there was on Trade me a 69 Mustang Fastback dirt track car, was blue. Dont know whose it was , but definitely an early 70s car.Maybe MacConnachies?
Another one, a near new Capri had a couple at a park up zone, he used the cigarette lighter and there was a short circuit.Also there was a petrol leak so the car went up. I understood this was the Millen Capri, obviously not, but I am sure the vultures were there to get the carcass.
By the way, my XA Coupe was a stolen car in the 90s, and stripped.

Rod Grimwood
10-06-2012, 03:42 AM
John, Could be right with Capri, as it was a burnt out shell when it was put together for the dirt. It was near new, i thought it had been pinched and torched but the park up rings a bell. First painted dark blue and later white with orange. Had Morrisons Service Station from Rothesay Bay on it to start with. Shit I towed it from shore to park and back one night with my old mans mk2 cortina, poor thing. My ute broke a axle and we were stuck.

John McKechnie
10-06-2012, 09:03 AM
Rod, so you did the decent thing and drove the Capri home at 2 am leaving the ute.?I remember it had Morrisons on it.What was your involvement with this car? BTW, I have a car here you may be interested in viewing

Rod Grimwood
10-06-2012, 08:52 PM
Did fair bit of work on it from day 1 and spent a few hours with hammer, welder and spray gun. Did a bit of seat time. Goldie bought it and let me in seat until it ws sold. He was a hard case our mate Goldie.

That night we headed straight home John, no BBQ as i wanted to get the poor Cortina home.

The far corner in the pits against the rock wall, Scotty and his crew, Merrilees and his crew along with heaps of others, the famous BBQ.

John McKechnie
10-17-2012, 12:57 AM
Rod, if you want to see Georges old car ,swing by.