Originally held under the banner of the BP Alfa Classic, PDL Industries took over the naming rights of this popular classic race event in 1995 before SKOPE became involved in 2003. The enthusiasm from competitors and the public has never waned, and the meeting remains the biggest in both entry and crowd numbers on the Canterbury Car Club’s calendar.

A handful of cars from the 1991 inaugural event are still around and racing. The value of these cars has obviously increased, but their current or indeed original owners still believe that, as racing cars, their rightful place is on the track. Examples from the single-seaters include Graeme Hamilton with his New Zealand-built ACE III special and a 1972 Elden Mk8 Formula Ford now piloted by Hayden Cox.

In the sports car ranks, 22 cars fronted on day one of the event in 1991 – a field that comprised a good number of Lotus 7s, four Austin-Healeys and two locally made Mistrals. Today these numbers are down, with many of the survivors competing within the Vintage Car Club line-up.

F5000s are always popular (Photo Euan Cameron)

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