Chairman’s Letter for February 2020
January kick started the 20’s with great enthusiasm and great participation at all our events. February has continued that trend, with well attended and enthusiastic participation ensuring that the quantity and quality of events have been excellent. If this continues for another few months, the Roaring 20’s will be living up to their name!
The President’s Poker Run organized by our First Family, The Craddocks, saw 31 MG’s and 66 enthusiastic participants enjoying an excellent event that followed an equally brilliant Club Night, organized by Paul + Peter Spencer the week before, attended by about 50 people.
Their Valentine Day Club Night evoked memories of the 1928 Valentine Day Massacre with Spaghetti and Red Sauce accompanied by bagels, and a Piñata in the form of a horse’s head!
That same evening we presented our Annual Awards and had two 1973 specification cars on the Verandah. New member Schalk Viljoen presented his recently acquired (ex Peter Knight) damask red MGB GT accompanied by Stephen Grover’s MGB V8, an exceptional car with equally great providence.
The first run of February saw a great turnout by both Johannesburg and Northern members and their cars to raise the Club’s profile and exposure at an international event the 19th Passion for Speed held at Zwartkops. We are very grateful that FJ Smit and the driver of the Ginetta were not harmed in the accident that totally destroyed the Youth Project's MGA. True to form, members from both Centers have donated a variety of parts to rebuild the MGA.
Talk about raising the profile, that accident got the press’s attention!
We kick start March with the AGM and as a bonus we have Altus Van Heerden, Bloodhound SA CEO, presenting a talk on speed record breaking and Bloodhound. Annette will be making sandwiches for the evening. Thank you again, we are truly being spoilt by the Craddocks!
Our main event this month will be the Brooklyn Mall MG Time Line 2020 held from the 13th to the 15th March. This is our 5th year of the exhibit and we will be celebrating 90 years of the MG Car Club with hopefully 60 cars on display. To pull this off we will need ALL of our members assistance and lots of hours manning the exhibit. Arrangements are in hand and details will be posted shortly.
The Club Night in March will be held on Friday the 20th catered by Richard and his able assistant Avril Grover.
I Look forward to seeing you all on a run or at the Club to create MaGical memories and cement those MG family ties!
Annual General Meeting
Monday 2 March
All paid members are urged to attend, not only to connect with Members but to ensure your vote counts towards Club policies and committee representation.
The meeting will take place 7:30 for 8pm sharp.
If you would like to submit a proxy, please email firstname.lastname@example.org
Only members that have paid their annual subscriptions for 2020 are eligible to vote.
R350 paid by EFT
R390 paid by CASH
Country Members pay R230
Please use "Name+Subs" as reference
FNB Payment Details Details
Current Account: “MG Car Club-Northern Centre”
FNB Bank Account Number 623 6328 4359
Branch Code 250655 Menlyn Square
The AGM will be followed by a talk by our guest Altus Van Heerden, the Bloodhound SA CEO. He will be presenting an interesting 45 min talk about record breaking and Bloodhound.
February Natter + Noggin
3 February 2020
The Natter + Noggin began with a special guest appearance from Eskom, our old friend Loadshedding, plunging the meeting into a candle lit evening. Who said romance is dead?
The planned viewing of the recent Bloodhound Reccie was postponed for a future date. It is scheduled for broadcast after the AGM which will be heald at the March Noggin, Monday 2 March.
The evening’s discussion was a first hand account and analysis of the recent accident at the Zwartkop's Racetrack providing a spirited debate.
19th Passion for Speed
31 -2 February 2020
A Club Run to the Zwartkops Raceway 19th Passion for Speed was highlighted with a collision on track between the Youth Group MGA and a Ginetta, number 57.
Both drivers escaped without any major damage, unlike the MGA which has been written off. FJ was driving the MGA and Terry the Ginetta.
The Youth Group spokesman, Les McLeod, explained how the accident occurred when a Lotus Elan had "gone farming" and drove onto the track. In avoiding the Lotus, Terry started to roll spin and then roll. FJ came round the corner and T-boned Terry on his undercarriage and rolled a few times. There was no chance of FJ avoiding Terry.
A full investigation is being conducted by the racing authorities which is sure to be shared with the public.
The youth A was inspected with a full photographic report being prepared and submitted for scrutiny.
Despite the dramatic set back, the Youth Group are picking up the scrapes and rebuilding, hopefully to be back on track in the very near future.
Several MG club members have donated time, money and car components to assist with the rebuild.
According to Nick Parrot, the MGA will not "be buried" it will just take time to rebuild. Meantime, Bo Giersing is loaning the BGT he bought (ex Ian Hunter car) to the Youth Project.
“We shall transfer the engine and gearbox from the MGA and, with a lot of commitment and hardwork, we will have the car on track in a month to 6 weeks - that's the target.”
Bo has supported the youth project right from the begining, which is an amazing 9 or 10 years ago.
The Youth Group will gladly welcome any form of support from members.
William Kelly, a racing enthusiast, submitted this article about How Pursuit Racing Works.
How Pursuit Racing Works
The format is set up as a handicap(able) racing series. Purist motor sport enthusiasts will pooh pooh the notion of handicaps in favour of classes, in which lap times categorise different classes of car within each race. This is necessary owing to the sheer variety of cars competing in the Historics Racing division of Motor Sport South Africa (if there were a race for each class there would need to be five times the number of races, with one fifth the number of cars on the track, and hence not very interesting).
Pursuit is different in that it has no classes at all other than two categories, namely Fine Cars and Trophy Cars. Fine Cars are cars that are, well, fine! In other words these are bog standard original road going cars that you can drive to the track and race – literally all you need to add proper racing harnesses (seat belts), a fire extinguisher and cut out switch and one or two minor others and you are good to go.
Trophy cars on the other hand are cars that have been stripped for racing – they have lost most of their interior trim and so forth. Combining the two then makes provision then for a wider field and more cars on track within one race.
All clear as mud so far?
This is an Historic category so sadly there are some age requirements in addition. The model you drive needs to have been introduced to the local market 25 or more years ago and it needs to have been out of production for more than ten years – hence no 1974 original Golfs will be seen for a while, whilst the considerably newer BMW Z3 now qualifies! Hmmm…
On the paperwork front you will need to join HRSA and have your car obtain an HTP which is a Historic Tour Passport which is simply a document stating that the car is what it is. There are some rules as to what modifications you can do to your car but short of turbo charging it (if it wasn’t) they are reasonably accommodating.
You will also need an MSA license which covers you for legal racing (and insures you). Race entry paperwork and fees vary from track to track, and range from R1k to R1.5k normally. Kyalami, when it happens, is generally a lot more because, well, they’re busy testing beetles a lot of the time and can’t be arsed with Hysterics racing overly much.
Lastly of course you need to race. It’s quite easy despite the attempts to make it complicated. As a race car driver you do need to subtract 50 or so points from your IQ in order to make sense of racing, so the rules of Pursuit although simple, take some time to get used to.
The way it works is like this. You go out in the morning to do some qualifying. You will be timed. At the end of qualifying you go to the Pursuit Guys in the control office (they will tell you where, or simply follow everyone else) and see what your best lap time was. This becomes what is called your Nominated Time. If you think it’s rubbish you can nominate your own lap time (as long as it is a quicker time – you cannot nominate a slower one).
This Nominated Time is really important. What happens now is a Big Computer is used to generate some mathematics and what comes out is your starting time. The basic calculation takes your nominated time and multiplies it by the number of laps in the race for a total time that it should take you to complete the race if you manage to stay on the Nominated Time for each and every lap. Easy peasy!
The Big Computer then sorts out the cars in order of this time taken – slower cars will need more time to cover the distance whilst faster ones will need less. You would be amazed how many folk fail to grasp the concept.
From this it then works backwards and spits out the starting order. First to pull off will be the slowest car. Behind it will be the second slowest car and this will be set off as many seconds after the slowest car as it will take to finish the race in the SAME TIME. In other words, if both drivers put in perfect laps they will cross the finish line after the number of laps in the race, at exactly the same time. And so it goes for the entire field.
What this means is that you are always competing for position. You may not be racing door to door with someone the entire race but you will be competing especially in the last few laps. And if you are in a competitive middle sector time you will be racing properly for most of the race.
There is of course the safety net to ensure people play nicely. It is this – the dreaded Breakout Time. What this says is that if you go faster than your nominated time by more than 1.5% you get disqualified on the spot. This stops drivers from putting in a slower time and then storming through the field to cries of adulation from the adoring crowds of fans. You have to do it the hard way – consistent speed and clever overtaking – if you can’t overtake well you get held up and then can’t catch the leaders. Faster cars thus can have a harder time of it sometimes.
How hard can it be? Anyone can join in. Anyone. Especially Stephen Grover. In a nice red MGB GT.
In a response to some feedback from members, if you would like to volunteer to become involved in any of the Club's activities, please contact Pepi or one of the Committee Members. They are available on WhatsApp, email, telephonically or in person at Club functions.
Members volunteering and becoming involved in the Club bring fresh energy and ideas that enrich the environment for everyone.
If you would like to participate in hosting a Club Night, July, October, November + December are all looking for hosts.
Your Club, Your Way
President's Poker Run
Sunday 23 February 2020
A truly Presidential run faultlessly organized by the MG Car Club National President, Tony Craddock and his beautiful wife Annette. The run took us from our Clubhouse in Menlo Park on a 40km route to Ludwig Rose Farm and The Rose Restaurant, north of Pretoria for an excellent lunch. On arrival we were treated to complimentary drinks and a jovial atmosphere that set the tone for an excellent afternoon.
The run was an idea proposed by Annette, not only to honor the President of our club but to use it as an opportunity to once again uplift the residents of the Phyllis Robertson Home by making the “Entry Fee” for the run a donation of toiletries to our designated charity. A gesture the home, and in particular the residents, were thrilled about welcoming each participant with shouts of joy and lots of laughter, hugs and miles of smiles.
An excellent turnout from both Johannesburg and Northern Centers with 31 MG’s and 66 participants setting off in cool, overcast weather for a day filled with MG driving, good food and fun adding to the MG family memories already part of our history.
The winner of the Poker Run was William Kelly in his MG ZR, winning by a couple of poker hands ahead of Richard + Avril Grover in their MG TF, pipping our Special Guests Altus + Carin Van Heerden into third place, driving an MG TF lent to them by Dirk Putter.
William also won the longest distance travelled from home, beating the Grover’s buy 2km!
The oldest car on the event was judged to be Dirk + Jacqui Du Plessis, a resplendent Y Type.
Altus is the South African CEO of Bloodhound and after only one drive in an MG is ready to join the club and buy an MG.
On behalf of the Club and I, we would like to thank our First Lady Annette and President Tony for the excellent event of the highest order and we are all looking forward to next year.
Club Night: Valentine's Day
Friday 14 February 2020
A really romantic outing for Saint Valentine's Day with Italian food on the menu.
Inspired by all things Italian, P+P invited members to share spaghetti bolognese with heart shaped rolls followed by Italian kisses and ice cream.
la nostra famiglia
All the romance of the evening was tempered by real Italian Family with inspiration from the St Valantine's Day Massacre, in a garage located in Chicago, 1929.
The offer to members that couldn't be refused was highlighted with a horse head piñata to end the evening in fun.
Thanks to Stephen Grover who displayed the V8 on the stoep, much to Esra's delight and a second thank you to new member, Schalk Viljoen for adding his new GT (ex Peter Knight) to the stoep display.
Combined with Awards Night, the Club was the place to be and not sad and lonely because we like cars more than people.
Clarens Road Trip
P+P visited the Golden Gate with their golden boy
Booked in December 2019, our weekend trip to Clarens for the annual craft beer festival unfortunately collided with the February run. Determined to fly the MG regalia across the provincial borders we left Johannesburg on Friday afternoon for the start of the weekend adventure. The MGB had recently had his petrol pump replaced and we were feeling confident the run would be a good test for the upgraded fuel system. We were not disappointed as he ran brilliantly.
The country side was looking its best and we were amazed with the freshness of the sky and fields.
At about 20km outside the town we managed to collect a flying object on the driver’s side of the windshield. A massive crack, some shards of glass and our attention was diverted from the new personal record in fuel economy to a shattered view of the road.
We had taken a side route turning off the N3 at Villiers to discover major roadworks on R26. Traffic had been diverted onto the verge coating us in dust and forcing vehicles to navigate the very rocky construction site. Ironically the treturous portion,although frustrating, had allowed the roadster to pass unscathed.
After checking in at Clarens and a clean up of glass there was only one thing to do; go driving.
An afternoon in the Golden Gate National Park was the remedy for the disappointment of the windscreen. We were lucky enough to see two Secretary birds as well as a pair of jackels on the side of the road. Watching the sandstone turn gold in the setting sun certainly improved our outlook.
heading home on Sunday was thankfully incident free with the B outdoing himself in sheer driving pleasure.
2020 Award Winners
14 February 2020
Congratulations to all the recipiants of the 2020 MG Car Club Northern Cenre Awards.
A new floating trophy to celebrate ladies of the club
Stephen Grover + Robin Clarke
Mike Ashman Trophy
Ian + Meredith Greyling
Paul + Peter Spencer
Steve + Hazell Eden
Cats Eye Rally
Steve + Hazell Eden
Club Run: 5th Brooklyn Timeline
Celebrating 90 years of the MGCC
Thursday 12 -Sunday 15 March
Programme of event:
Thursday: Bays have been dedicated to MG cars from Thursday evening. Security has been upgraded too to accommodate members that may need an additional day to gather cars to the Mall.
Friday: Remaining cars to be positioned from 7pm onward at the Mall. Meet at the designated parking area prior to entry procession. which will be controlled based on final positioning. The evening usually culminates in an informal dinner at the Mall.
Saturday: Cars will be on display during Mall hours. Volunteers will man the fort keeping an eye on the cars and being friendly to shoppers. Saturday will end with the formal Cheese + Wine + Beer and speeches.
Sunday: After closing hour at 5pm, cars will be taken out the mall with the 2020 display officially coming to an end.
PLEASE NOTE THAT THE MARCH CLUB NIGHT + CLUB RUN HAVE SWAPPED DATES
Monday 6 Natter + Noggin
MaGical Memories Marge or Roger McIeery
Friday 17 Club Night
Up for grabs by an enthusiastic Member
Sunday 26 Club Run
Easter Weekend 10-13 APRIL
Friday 1 Dambusters Run Sunbeam Club
Monday 4 Natter + Noggin
7 - 10 May Knysna Hill Climb
Friday 15 Club Night
Tony's Birthday Celebration
Sunday 24 Club Run
Condition Concours + Boot Sale at Clubhouse
Monday 1 Natter + Noggin
Sunday 14 POMC British Classic Car Day in Silverton
Friday 12 Club Night
Sunday 28 Club Run
CBC Chicken Braai Fundraiser (TBC)
Monday 6 Natter + Noggin
Sunday 11 Club Run 1
Krugersdorp Airfield (TBC)
Friday 17 Club Night
Dave's Chilli con Carne
Sunday 26 Club Run 2
Combined Centres Show Day in Johannesburg
To be Confirmed
National Indaba in Oudshoorn
MG Midget Boot Rack
Stainless steel OE pattern Midget boot rack. Never fitted.£204 from the owners club. Yours for R 1200
Steve Eden 082 372 8740
Two piece Rotisserie to rotate body shell body shop dolly
Bob: 011 468 2848
MGA 1600 Coupe
Very reliable runner, papers in order and up to date. For further particulars and price, please contact :
Vernon Acton 083 647 6700 (East London)
1955 MG 1500 TF
Nut and bolt restoration 4 years ago done 500 miles since. Excellent condition. R 450 000.
Phone Julian Pringle email@example.com
Reconditioned MGA 1500 Cylinder Head
Has been skimmed, has unleaded valve seat inserts, Pressure tested and the thickness is 80.5mm. R 8000,00.
MG Related Magazines, General Classic Car Books + Magazines
- MG, Motoring + Motorsport Related Books
- TA / TB / TC parts for long term build project.
- Bare chassis + body have been acquired…
- MGB GT V8 Gearbox
- EMCO Lathe
Stephen Grover 082 818 0540 firstname.lastname@example.org
Restoration of Roof Lining
Ian Grace is looking for assistance/recommendations with the restoration of his roof lining. Assistance greatly appreciated.
MGB Works Hardtop wanted in good condition.
Ray 082 922 6106 or email@example.com
TC restoration Project
Mike Berry is restoring a TC and is having a problem sourcing some parts to complete the project. Any help would be much appreciated.
- 200-250 Spare wheel spinner
- 406-855 Bonnet catch RH
- 406-800 Bonnet catch LH
- 2H-2338 lgnition warning lamp, Red
- 401-308 Striker
- 262-310 Steering wheel centre
- 145-700 Starter switch
- 150-100 Copper contact set for starter switch
- 405-200 Plate side screen x4
Angela Plows 082 401 0066 (Pietermaritzburg)