This year’s John Brash Dash was an evening affair for tin-tops, with an emphasis on passenger rides.
Report by Chris Ralph and Dean Bryant. Pics by Phil Wisewould www.philwisewould.zenfolio.com
The HTCAV’s annual John Brash Dash again took place in mid-February at Calder Raceway; this time a few format changes had spruced it up.
Changing from a Sunday to a Saturday, it was also moved to the afternoon and early evening to make the day more relaxed and accommodate those who worked on Saturday mornings.
It was also an untimed event to take the pressure off any expectations, but hey, we’re talking competitors! Race car + race track + testing new bits = a little bit of Wellington on display.
Some of the driver-only sessions were quite brisk as cars were given a shakedown – and some passengers got an extra thrill here and there as well. Huge smiles at the end of each session meant that the ‘Family Fun Day’ description was spot on as family, friends, mechanics and helpers experienced what it is that makes HTCAV racers so obsessed with what they do.
From recently retired V8 Supercars to mild road cars and historic tourers, octane sniffers had a top day. An early shower made the entry to the main straight very slippery as cars coped with the slick of drag racing compounds; the last six hours were pleasant – unusual at a track known for its weather extremes.
Already the organisers are working on next year’s event, and maximizing the fun component.
And as an aside – it was interesting to see two skilled and enthusiastic drivers on the track at the same time who had both been ‘born into the club’ – Emily Sneddon driving her quick road Ford Focus SR-T and Cameron Brown punting Justin’s BMW 2002. Both did many swift laps with many passengers in the perfect spirit of the meeting.
Out with the tissues – the CoC’s personal view
As Clerk of Course for our February John Brash Dash event at Calder I felt compelled to jot down a few thoughts on this special event.
Firstly I want to explain why this event was so special to me and my family. Brashy was a special man. His music talents were used many times for club events and we all enjoyed that tremendously. A few years back I used to organise the after-race activities at Historic Sandown and one year we put Brashy and his Rank Outsiders R&B band up on the back of a semi and made sure the grog was cold and plentiful – yes I had a knack for that! My kids sat wide-eyed, close to the stage and sat in awe of Brashy’s talents. At the end of night Brashy came off stage and asked the kids what they thought and they were obviously just a bit starstruck.
Brashy identified that my son Travis had not taken his eyes of his string work all night and asked him if he would like to strum his old acoustic that he used in a few sets. Trav nearly fell over himself saying yes and as Brashy handed the guitar to him he starting strumming it with a beaming smile and wide eyed look of total delight. Brashy told Travis how he had owned that beautiful guitar for many years and it was one of his favourites. He then calmly told Travis that he hoped that would cherish it and enjoy it as much as he had – he gave that guitar to my boy in an act of simple kindness and love. This is the sort of man John Brash was and as such it was my honour to be C of C at an event in his honour.
I’m pleased to say Travis now makes amazing music and has had many songs and albums released, and not only in Australia. From little things big things grow – thanks Brashy I love you.
OK, you can stop your sniffling now. On track it was a ripper day and I can’t thank enough the efforts of our well-oiled team of volunteers. You all did a tremendous job, thank you. Huge thanks to David Floyd and Geoff Vernon for their efforts with the critical legal aspects of the event. And many thanks to Peter Sneddon and his team for organising and running the scrutineering aspects of the event – no small task!
Driving standards on the day were really excellent on the whole and the few drivers I had to talk to showed excellent attitudes – again, thank you. It seems that since I have stopped driving, driving standards have risen – hmmm, what does that say?
Each year we learn from our successes and failures so we are able to improve on the whole from year to year.
Thank you to all for supporting our club with this event and thank you for remembering the bloke whose honour for which this event was held.