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The Mid Week Retirees Run

The Weather Bureau has been predicting the four horsemen of the apocalypse, Antarctic gales and something about a vortex for most of this week, after that sort of scare mongering you would have expected no one to turn up.  However at least 10 hardy Lancias accompanied by their owners and partners made short work of the glorious Gippsland countryside visiting such exotic locations as Caldermeade (great Pies) Wonthaggi (coal, wind and desalination plant) and various bits of wonderful coastline.  We ended the day driving via Inverloch to Meeniyan for a rest, restorative drink and food at the local pub.
Wednesday started with various participants driving up and down Meeniyan’s busy main street in search of breakfast eventually ending up at the café where very little muesli was consumed. The now groaning Lancias then set off in a semblance of a convoy and headed for the spectacular Agnes Falls 43km away (see photo). After consuming the equivalent of several rolls of film we set off for Mirboo North to have a look at Colin Kiel’s (more photos) excellent car museum then onto Escargot Café for a snail or three.

Thanks to Russell Cayley for a great run.

More photos just added from Noel Macwirter (somewhat better than mine!)

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BETA BONKERS run to Ellender Estate

I named the run “Beta Bonkers” thinking no one would take me too seriously, but as it turned out that’s exactly what happened when 5 x Beta coupes, 1 x beta Spyder and 1 x Beta Montecarlo showed up.
Michael Southgate was there to join us for the run in his lovely Flavia as well, just to break up the monotony.

Breakfast was at the BP truck stop in Rockbank . It was a great opportunity for a group photo and some eyeing off of all the cars present in-between bacon and egg toasties.

The run headed up to Glenlyon , just outside of Daylesford. Of course we took the back roads off the main hwy at Greendale and then towards Trentham. The drive towards Blackwood was extremely enjoyable with lots of twists and turns and undulations to really put the Beta’s thru their paces.

We decided to start the run a bit later this time, and not stop for a coffee break, which was really difficult after passing the Red Beard Bakery in Trentham and smelling the fresh bread and coffee wafting thru the cabrio of the spyder. None the less onward and upward to Ellender Estate. Upon entering the estate I got the shock of my life when no less than a dozen Kangaroo’s hopped right across the driveway as we were entering. All I could think about was my shiny new red duco was not going to fair well if one of these animals misplaced a hop or two. Thankfully they were very respectful and avoided all cars.

Graham and Jenny Ellender were fantastic hosts, with wine tasting of their own wine’s from chardonnay’s to Pinot’s , all grown and bottled onsite.
Entrée consisted of local produce platters of antipasta , meats and cheeses, with local home made sourdough that was just divine. Lunch was a mixture of pizza’s cooked in a 400deg wood fire oven for 30sec again topped with local produce. Absolutely no one went hungry as the pizza’s kept coming until we could take no more.

The day wrapped up about 2.30pm and all agreed we could not leave without a Trentham coffee so we decided to head back.
The first bit of trouble was my Spyder. Having been her maiden long trip, it was impossible to be all smooth sailing. And so the gremlins struck immediately when turning the ignition, there was absolutely nothing! What the @#*&@. A few panicked taps on relays and jiggling of wires and plugs under the fuse box yielded results with everything coming back alive. Phew dodged a bullet.
Having arrived in Trentham, another beta owner mentioned he was on vapours not having noticed his fuel gauge the whole trip. A quick scurry around found a servo about a kilometre away. Bullet No2 dodged. The 3rd bullet came from the Montecarlo, when trying to restart her again after coffee showed a complete electrical short! This was not good. We quickly disconnected the battery and she reset but would not start. With a small crowd of town folk gathering, we asked them to put down their beers for a moment and give us a push start. With a splutter she fired back to life. Terrific News for all.

It just proved that no matter what happens there is always a quick fix to get you going. Now try applying that theory to new cars if they break down. Don’t Think So ..

Hats off to our new member Rodney Bartolo and his first ALR outing in his 81 Silver beta coupe . He definitely gets the award for longest day drive having come from Mt Martha covering about 450km for the day.

It was a real pleasure organising the day out and hope to see everyone and more Beta’s at the Castlemaine festivities in OCT.

Angelo Monteleone

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