MELBURNIANS had no shortage of cool car stuff to do over the Australia Day long weekend, with King Of The Hill at Calder Park, cruises galore and the Victorian Hot Rod & Cool Rides Show at the Royal Exhibition Building. This year, we rolled out to the latter in Mr Dodgey and parked up with the other cool cruisers outside the front entrance for $15.
The usual outdoor displays on the museum side of the Exhibition Building were absent this year, but in their place was a new display area at the rear of the building that mixed a new bunch of cars each day amongst the gardens and an outdoor bar.
Inside the hall was a collection of high-end metal, some already familiar from Summernats, but many others fresh or new to the Melbourne show scene. Let’s check them out, starting with the Top Five judged showcars.
Wasyl Rosati’s megabucks Procharged Hemi-powered ’50 Mercury scored a ton of silverware including the Coolest Ride gong
Peter Olver has done killer job refining the amazing Pro Touring EH original built by Tasmania Ricky Absolom
Mike King’s XM Falcon was fresh from taking out an Elite Top Ten spot at Street Machine Summernats 32, as well as the PPG Vibrace Supreme Entrant award. Feature next issue!
Jack Zee’s 1938 Fordson van is dubbed Speed Box is a masterclass in fabrication, with ever panel completely reworked. Underneath is a 8/71-blown 383ci small block Chev
Tony Wilson’s CHOODA ’32 tudor has had a big birthday and also nabbed a Top 10 spot at Summernats 32
Wasyl Rosati also brought his ’68 Dodge Charger, which is powered by a Procharged big block nabbed third place in the Street Machine Coupe class
Alan Clarke began building his incredible FJ custom in the late 1960s, but only recently got it back up and running, powered by a tough Holden V8 that has seen battle both around the Calder Park Thunderdome and across the salt flats of Lake Gairdner! The body has been chopped, sectioned and channelled and converted to a coupe with extended front doors
Brisbane’s Gary Wright bought this ’32 roaster in 1962 and turned it into the quintessential Aussie hot rod, deeply channelled and Y-block powered. After a successful show career, the car was sold to George Kotavich, who repowered it with the then-hot Windsor V8. After going through a series of owners, Michael Morris purchased what remained of the car and set out on a 10-year odyssey to restore the ’32 to its original glory
Adrian Morgan of Kooltrim fame has decked out many of Melbourne’s top street cars, and his own EH Holden van is spectacular. It nabbed the Top Van/Wagon gong of the show. She’s a toughie too, powered by a stove-hot and triple-Weber-fed 202
The biggest news debut-wise was Angelo Furfaro’s VC Valiant built by Eliminator Rod and Custom in Melbourne. The beast is powered by a twin-turbo, dry-sumped R5P7 NSACAR mill and features a ton of body mods, including a reshaped scuttle panel that rises up to meet the reverse-cowl scoop, trick recessed firewall, relocated fuel filler, extended front guards that flow into the sills and an all-new floor and trans tunnel