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S/I Champs 2017: Showtime [Day three]

19 December 2017




The morning of day three started off understandably quiet, with most of those lurking around early looking as if they had celebrated long into the night with an endless supply of ‘pride of the South’. Regardless, come midday, things were pretty well packed out, and punters flooded the Southern Trust Events Centre to catch a glimpse of the selection. We’re never left disappointed by the level of quality going on in the south, and there were even a few gems that we had never seen in the flesh before. The most notable of these was a genuine Mazda Roadpacer. Credit is well deserved by all those who entered, as everyone’s flavour was accounted for, and the huge amount of effort poured into practically all the cars on display was more than evident.

Last year, we noted the firm grip that the southies have over the country’s collection of older Toyota chassis, and although still true this time around, you couldn’t help but notice the huge insurgence of top-quality builds of all makes, both on the track and at the show, on day three — the likes of Ryan ‘The Bourbon Butcher’ Morrison’s immaculately presented 600hp RB30DET-powered C33 drift car; Jason Pooke’s tough-as-nails R34 GT-R, which is just one of the many top-tier builds in his collection (with more to come); Thomas Gordon’s mega-camber kei car; Johnny Latham’s D1NZ Pro LS-powered BMW E46 unveiling; down to the efforts put in by rotary-only club Rotor Pulse, and the Euro Nation team.

As we departed Timaru on the Monday followed by a few shouts of “Timaz hard” from the locals that remained, it was like it had all never happened. Timaru was transformed back to a sleepy southern coastal town for another year — and we pondered our final thoughts about the weekend before boarding a flight home. It’s a hard thing to sum up, really, as there’s a whirlwind of emotions to be had, but, if we had to boil it down to one simple statement, it would be this: the south knows how to party. 

With the 2018 dates now announced, we’ll catch you all back down there to do it all again …