Kandos Street Machine & Hot Rod Show 2020

Rain, hail or shine, Kandos is always a good time

Photographers: Tim McCormack, Jason Lowe

YOU don’t need to be Tim Bailey to know that much of country NSW has been ravaged by extreme weather and bastard bushfires in recent times. In fact, a couple of weeks out from the annual Kandos Street Machine & Hot Rod Show, organisers weren’t certain the event would go ahead. “We were worried, but then we had some rain and things turned around,” said club secretary Kristie Healey. “In the end we had 207 entrants, which is pretty typical, and a great result all things considered.”

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Anyone who frequents the show knows that the weather is often a factor – that’s January in Kandos for you – and 2020 was no exception, with searing heat interrupted on the Saturday afternoon with a brief but heavy downpour. The club managed it well, drying out the burnout track and getting proceedings back underway in no time flat.

The burnouts are undoubtedly the central attraction at Kandos, with the Forced Induction class being the one to win for ultimate bragging rights. This year it was local fella Blake Lobley in his blown Chev-powered SHORTY Land Cruiser who emerged victorious, trumping Jesse Johnson’s KILLA-K Commodore.

Datsuns were the weapon of choice in the Aspirated Eight-Cylinder class, with Daniel Battersby wheeling his LS-powered 1200 ute to victory over Matt Case in DATSLOOSE – yep, another Datto!

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Dan Peirce’s ORGAN DONOR Falcon might not look like much, but it was enough to get the chocolates in the Aspirated Four/Six-Cylinder class over second-placed Jason Beattie in WHYLS.

In the show ’n’ shine side of things, a bunch of ex-Street Machine feature cars ruled the roost. Defending Kandos Grand Champ John Spinks proved that his stunning Holden-powered pro touring Torana hatch hadn’t aged a day, winning Top Street Machine and Top Retrotech. Johnny also drove the car to and from the event from Sydney, and it didn’t miss a beat.

Adam Wheeler’s gorgeous VL Calais took out Top Sedan and Top Engine Bay, with lots of clever thinking, trick fab work and billet goodies from Lowe Fabrications under the bonnet.

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But the biggest trophy of all was reserved for Jason McGrath’s gorgeous LC Torana, which won Top Two-Door, Police’s Choice and the coveted Grand Champion. “I was quite pleased and surprised, to be honest,” said Jason. “The countryside out this way got a beating over the Christmas break, so it was good to head up there and help out by throwing a few bucks around on accommodation, food and beers. It’s just like a big group of mates up here; everyone is there for a good time and they’re always up for a yarn.”