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January Reset

JANUARY

Club Life

Straight into 24′ we go ..

We’re burning down the January straight and there’s no time to slow down. The annual calendars been penned out and she’s looking busy, the drive – to deliver events to the members.

Our monthly club nights sit prominent. Motorkhanas, rallysprint and hillclimbs sprinkled throughout giving members variation and choice. One hill climb in particular, a special one – the Rodney Atchison Memorial Tarmac Hill Climb which is set to run later in the year. Everything gets put into events but this one will feel like that little bit extra and will resonate with members.

We’re set to enjoy the summer spoils, with the first big event kicking off in over a months time. Motorkanas are making a welcome return and we’re looking forward to all the familiar faces to join us in what will be another exiting year.

The committee is strong on the scent of event planning. With many-events, multitasking takes on an urgency so we deliver what you know and what you love. There are many friendly faces around the committee table, with a focus, and many a chuckle, collaborating on the clubs roadmap, which is both exciting and rewarding.

Tracking into future we go, the following is solid. We’re still dead keen on loading up the race cars and heading out to the next event. If maintenance has been done, or you’re still bogging up last years efforts, this year is looking good. When the glass is half full, everything looks good, so put on the rose coloured glasses and we’ll see you out there.

Presidents Report

Happy new Year to you all! I hope everyone’s batteries are well recharged for another great year of motorsport!

I am 3 months into the role of Pukekohe Car Club President, and still feeling my way.  A huge thanks to the Committee and members who have been working hard mainly behind the scenes to make things happen. I need to acknowledge and thank Past President, Noel Miller, for all he has done for the Club, and for all the sage advice he gives

So, a bit about me:

As a relative newcomer to motorsport, there is a lot to learn. However, I do come from a not-for-profit, volunteer background, and have led organisations in both governance and operational areas.

We live at Sunset Farms, the host of the Tarmac section of Speed Weekend, and we always enjoyed having the event on our backyard- my son got his first ride in a rally car there, and so the journey began!

Although I don’t drive competitively, I have been in my happy place as a Marshall, getting up close to the action at PCC events, other Club events and also at WRC2022. I have enjoyed my first attempts at Motorkhanas, and had a couple of rides in cars at our hillclimb – which was so much fun! However, ensuring events are well organised and run smoothly is very important to me, so no doubt I’ll be learning plenty of other roles as I go along.

The Committee has done some planning sessions and is working to bring a range of events together for 2024, so watch this space- we hope there will be something for everyone, from beginners at Motorkhanas through to our experienced drivers at Hill Climbs and Rally Sprints. We have decided to concentrate on these events this year, then look at another rally possibly next year. We are looking at bringing a few happenings into a few Club Nights, to make them more interesting. If anyone has ideas of speakers, learning opportunities or something a bit fun, please let us know!!

We like to hear what you think? Please get in touch with me president@pukekohecarclub.co.nz

I hope to see you all at one of our events or Club Nights soon.

Fiona

A Committee Focus

We’d like to share a little around the discussion points from the committee nights, held once a month at the clubrooms on Station Road in Pukekohe.

Our meetings are hybrid, mainly well represented in person, warm welcome’s are followed by an agenda covering financial, event planning and general topics. People dialled in sometimes get fomo of what feels like a meeting at the pub with mates.

  • Event planning has been blown out to the whole year, key to setting and aligning on the roadmap. Communications and resident rapport is one of our main prerogatives in the planning and execution of events. Like long lost relatives, we pop in to chat with people, provide information about events and address any concerns they may have, we engage with local fundraisers where we can, we take people for fun rides, we go the extra mile.
  • We were aiming to put a new road on the table for our rallysprint this year however roads are victim to how well they are looked after, and our options not quite in an adequate state for the larger scale event. We’re heading to Bothwell running in the opposite direction, starting down on the flat by the bridge. The pits need to be moved with a new acquisition on the land where we used to pit.
  • Motorkhana planning is swiftly falling into place with a couple lined up soon. Bloody good fun these are, turn a blind eye to the flattened grass if you’re the property owner, straight after hay is better. THE BEST VALUE you can get for weekend motorsport fun!
  • Running a rally has been hot topic, the group has voted though and we want to focus on what we’ve already got lined up for this year. 2025 sounds far away but actually allows time to give it the focus this type event demands.
  • Another working bee is needed, tidy up assistance from the members helps keep the old girl keep standing. We’ll propose a summer date soon.
  • The MSNZ AGM is coming up on 24-25 May. PCC committee will discuss the AGM agenda with members attending. CotC/Clerk of the Course, in person training sessions are being run in Wellington in February, the club is getting behind its licensed members to aid them with license renewals.
  • General banter topics wrap up another good meeting then the members erupt into conversation. Nikki salutes Craig on his absolute dedication to putting cars together, the Heron sounding good in a recent post – follow him on Heron MJ1 Restoration on Facebook, he could almost write up an assembly vehicle manual I suspect 🙂

Events

Event planning and tentative dates are below;

*Dates can be subject to change

Club Night, clubrooms 7th Feb

Motorkhana 17/18 Feb TBC

Club Night, clubrooms 6th March

Bothwell Loop Rallysprint 17th March

Motorkhana, Ararimu 23rd March

Club Night, clubrooms 3rd April

Pizza Night, Nikau Cafe April

Club Night, clubrooms 1st May

Motorsport NZ AGM 24-25th May

Kemp Road Hillclimb 26th May TBC

Club Night, clubrooms 5th June

Motorkhana June TBC

Club Night, clubrooms 3rd July

Club Night, clubrooms 7th August

Motorkhana August

Club AGM/Prizegiving 4th September

Club Night, clubrooms 2nd October

Murray Road Hillclimb 13th October

Motorkhana + Autocross, Limestone Downs 2-3rd November

Club Night, clubrooms 6th November

Speed Weekend, Port Waikato 23-24th November

Club Night, clubrooms 4th December

Motorkhana December

Trading the Goods

From safety gear to parts, members often have items for sale and where better to list than on our club communications.

Contact secretary@pukekohecarclub.co.nz for our current listings

2 x sets of overalls

Single layer

1 x Size L & 1 x Size XXL

$50 for each set

Perfect for motorkhana & autocross

What Happens When it Doesn’t Go Right

50, 3L opens 100 braking to 3R …….. s**t ….. crash, bang, smash …..

We talk about events and when things are going really well, the car’s running primo and no ‘funny quirks’ that were happening at last event etc. But what happens when things don’t go quite according to plan? Velocity beats talent and you end up having a near miss or worst case, through a fence, down a bank or stopping suddenly via tree or other hard non-moving object.

The push to squeeze a few more seconds resulted in my first proper accident. Run 4 hillclimb event, new to the road and finding my feet, screaming down a straight, same line as prior runs, I thought. I hit the brakes and ….. nothing, no turning, no control, hurtling towards a bank.

The impact, maybe around 50km+ into a clay bank, I was hoping for more foliage to slow or brace the impact, but the few bushy leaves were hiding a solid bank face. Time slowed for about 1.5 seconds, enough time to just process what was about to happen, then it sped right back up again, accentuating the impact. No HANS device (not mandatory for this type of event), forced an un-natural stretch of the neck towards the steering wheel, even strapped into the belts tight. Seriously stunned mullet mode, then a disoriented stumble away from the car, I didn’t feel a tear in my neck from the seatbelt buckle. Just trying to process what just happened.

Racing for about 10 years, a fearless demeanour starts to build. The kinks and twists, the flow of the road, it’s exhilarating. The greater hub of motorsport people are inspirational and we all kind of push each other perhaps. We know the dangers of racing, yet come race day, adrenaline charges us forward, watching the lights countdown ready to rock and roll.

Post accident, the poor Suzuki’s a mess, ripples and warps. The body, much the same, ripples and warps. The safety gear saved my behind. I’ve shaved off another half a cat life, and with not many more to go, racer safety is now absolutely paramount. Off to the motorsport shop and a HANS device will be the next purchase I make. 100% we should all be using these at every event!

Next reality, a rather expensive repair bill. I’ll scrimp and save, barter and trade. Likely co-drive for a bit as who has $10K in their back pocket for an immediate repair, and if so why aren’t you booked in for a trip to Fiji?? Just chuck it on the pile of other annoying bills like the mortgage, and hope to be back together and on the road sometime soon. It’s mostly 98% cool, but a bit stink when it doesn’t go right.

Nikki, Hillcimb Racer

Motorsport Volunteers

Our unsung hero’s, motorsport volunteers are absolutely crucial for the running of our events. From motorkhana through to rally and race, every discipline and level events require dozens or even hundreds of volunteers to aid with the running of the day.

MSNZ clearly defines some of the main event volunteers roles here https://motorsport.org.nz/officials/roles/

Many of our members have volunteered at our local events, some have their favourites roles or positions they prefer, others open to moving around learning various key positions. Your contribution to the sport is INVALUABLE! Volunteers are offered training, whether it be on the day, shadowing with other experienced members or attending set training days. It is such a great way to be involved in the sport if not directly competing and developmental channels and pathways are always open for those wanting to continue to grow in their volunteer journey.

MSNZ has a Volunteers Register here Motorsport NZ Volunteers Register  Free of Charge

Registering keeps details centralised and allows MSNZ to communicate efficiently, seek your important feedback and aid with training pathways. You receive a volunteers license and get a logbook where you can keep track of your volunteering AND you get access to key MSNZ partner benefits such as discounts on your insurance, fuel, accommodation, travel and activities at Hampton Downs, Highlands Motorsport Park and GameOver.

If you actively participate in events, you can also apply – Free of Charge – for a Motorsport Specialist Register, which is effectively a license and log book for general volunteer officials such as flag marshals, block marshals and many more official positions. Also a great way to record voluntary progress made. Log onto MSNZ online and search for Motorsport Specialist Register and apply online.

We look forward to working with volunteers in registering and if assistance is needed, please contact Nsim@xtra.co.nz

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