Ashton’s President’s Prattle for March, 2020

President's Prattle

Morning everyone,

The year marches on into Autumn, and with it, an increase in activity as it becomes easier to use the car. In fact I had a lovely run out to Sackville yesterday in the Elan, and it reminded me how much fun you can have at or below the speed limit, with the accompanying symphony from the twin cam and twin webers. Great fun! Must do it more…

Speaking of more, March has lots going on:

  1.  On Tuesday the 10th, SSC has kindly offered to host an evening at their showrooms where I will run through some of the highlights and lowlights of the Peking to Paris Challenge. Gidget, the Austin Healey in which we completed the rally will also be present. Please come along and if you have any questions, please make sure to ask otherwise I might bore everyone to death
  2. The first round of the CSCA sprints, which we host, is on 14th. If you have ever wondered what fun your car can be on a track but never tried, this is a great opportunity. It’s a friendly environment, with lots of help available both the prepare and participate. If I can help, drop me a line
  3. The following day, on Sunday 15th, is our Tyre Kick and Coffee, which is gaining great traction and fast turning into the regular gathering of friends we hoped it would. See you there I hope
  4. The weekend of 21st – 22nd is the HSRCA’s Autumn Festival, and there are always loads of fun and interesting cars and people there. Even if you only come along for a chat and a wander, its a fun day out. And if you are participating, I look forward to seeing you there – the Elite should be ready.

Looking slightly further ahead, the website for the 2021 biennials is up and running, with grateful thanks to Seth. Have a look at for details of the plan for February next year, pics of some familiar cars, and the expression of interest form to enable us to keep you up to date with progress.

Shortly we will be launching the pre-payment facility to allow participants to pay in installments. We just have to nail down the finer details of the total cost (which we couldn’t do until one-year out, as no-one takes bookings further out than that). We are looking forward to a fun week in Tasmania, and I really hope you can join us.

If anyone would like to write an occasional column in Chunkies Chatter on anything that takes their fancy (can be car-related, or not, entirely up to you, but we will probably apply the filter of no politics, sex or religion!), please drop a line to Tom or I with your thoughts – we’d love to build out the content as you want to see it.

1950 AJS

And finally, I am having a slight rationalisation of the “fleet”, so the 1950 AJS that I have now had for over 10 years has finally moved on to its next custodian. It is a lovely piece of mechanical history, but was not getting used enough, and as we all know, machines need to be used. It may be replaced by something I can use to commute on and get around the increasingly congested inner west at the weekends…. we’ll see!

1972 Datsun 1600

I am about to start to the process to put Gidget up for sale, as I am hatching a plan with fellow CLA member Brad Douglass to restore his 1972 Datsun 1600 and campaign that in the next P2P in 2022. So sadly, Gidget is probably not going to get another run at it!

If anyone is interested in, or knows anyone interested in, one of the original coronet cream Austin Healey 100s (the colour is important to those interested apparently!), albeit a rather heavily modified version and now with the provenance of being the first Healey to complete the Peking to Paris rally (and get her photo in the press :)), please put them in touch!

Right, better get this off to Tom so he can work his magic, and I look forward to seeing you at SSC on Tuesday 10th March.

In the meantime, keep it safe, upright and (largely) on the blackstuff,

Pip pip,

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