Happy Easter from everyone at Rally Round! Spring has sprung and we’ve been bouncing around the office attending to countless tasks, not least preparations for November’s Haka Classic Rally in New Zealand. The second route recce has been completed, the road book finalised and visits to race circuits and test venues confirmed. The support team has been organised, our flights have been booked and the mechanics’ jandals and chilly bins have been ordered (we’re learning the lingo!).
There are now only a few places left on the event – numbers are strictly limited as we are exploring some pretty remote places – so if you want to join us please get in touch as soon as possible to avoid disappointment.
And it surely would be a disappointment. With its spectacular volcanoes, mountains, rivers, lakes and forests, New Zealand is a land of immense, primeval beauty. What’s more, as if competing in a classic rally weren’t enough, there are plenty of other exciting activities on offer – and we don’t just mean engaging Alastair Caldwell in an argument about 1970s McLaren F1 cars. From crewing an Americas Cup yacht for a few hours to rafting, jet-boating, whale watching, mountain biking, bungee jumping, sky diving or taking a helicopter or fixed-wing flight to the glaciers, New Zealand really has it all, and that’s before you even consider the wonderful food, the great wines and the friendliness of the people.
Above all the Haka Classic is a rare opportunity to enjoy a fabulous drive – you’ll encounter alpine-style passes, switchbacks, single-track lanes and a sprinkling of wonderful gravel sections, demanding but not damaging. On fantastic, empty roads the 100km/h (62mph) speed limit is ideal, not too fast for the vintage cars yet exciting enough for the classics. Driving in New Zealand is a joy, an experience no longer possible in much of the traffic-choked northern hemisphere. Indeed you could find more driving enjoyment in four weeks here than in four years at home – we can hardly wait!
In the meantime, for your entertainment, we’ve found a charming film of the 1961 New Zealand Grand Prix, a reminder of the country’s rich motorsport heritage – click here. Sadly many of the star drivers (such as Denny Hulme, pictured above) are no longer with us, but the venues remain – Auckland and Dunedin are both on the Haka Classic route.
You’ll find more details of the event, including a recce report and online entry form, on our Haka Classic website page. We look forward to hearing from you!