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“77 Hot Rod Spectacular”

It’s amazing what you can find around your workshop. I had a real discovery this week and it has brought back many memories for me.

I used to live in Adelaide and it was in the City of Churches that my love for vintage cars really started to have an impact. The Wayville Showgrounds (or Adelaide Showgrounds) has been hosting Speedway events since the 1920s.

Known as the Speedway Royal, cars would race around an egg-shaped track located within the main arena since 1926. This is what Wayville Showgrounds looks like today and you can easily make out the track.

Wayville stopped hosting speedway meetings after 1934. The Wikipedia site mentions that harness racing was a factor. The speedway would not return to Wayville until 1986.

In the meantime the S.A. Hot Rod Association held their annual Hot Rod Spectacular at this site. The 1977 was to be the most memorable one of them all.

Can you see my name?

This was the first time I had entered anything, and to be part of the Adelaide Street Rodders was truly something. It was a great club. There were 16 Members in total and 12 of them entered cars, not a bad record.

The ’77 Hot Rod Spectacular had it all. Warren Young the show manager writes in my edition of the show programme: “We are very happy to have two eye-catching Victorian cars over, the first being Rod Hadfield’s 1950 Anglia, and although not being capable of registration in S.A. we felt would be an added asset to the show in showing the magnificent design and engineering work being achieved in a car not commonly modified.

“The second feature car is the popular chopped top ’34 Ford Coupe owned and built by Graeme Webb from Melbourne.”

Some of the special features from the year I was there included the Miss Street Rodding Quest, and the wheel changing competition. Truth be told I only remember the work and pride I put into my ‘ 29 Dodge Roadster to get it ready for that show.

Again as Mr Young duly writes in another part of the programme: “Other rodders have entered the show with no greater intention than to show you, the public, just what street rodding is all about. Look beyond the chrome and fancy paint and you will find a vehicle that has been painstakingly put together over a period of years.”

I couldn’t agree more. The show went over five days from Wednesday 19 to Sunday 23 of October in 1977.

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