CITTASLOW GOOLWA GOPHER FESTIVAL, 2012
Report by Edward Booth
GIANTS BATTLE IT OUT ON THE TRACK.
the 3rd of March 2012, was a major day for motor racing in
South Australia. The third Cittaslow Goolwa Gopher Festival
was back in town.
Goolwa was abuzz with activity as gopher riders honed their
skills prior to going through their paces.
This year, the event was held in the Alexandrina Council car
park, with Council as the major sponsor. Lions Club of Goolwa
The Festival started at 11:00 am with an introduction by
Compere, Richard Kleinig of Alex FM and Edward Booth, the
organiser. Richard stood in for Peter Goers who was unable to
attend at the last moment.
There were 20 entrants aged from late 80s down to about 20.
The first event was the Gymkhana, where riders had to thread
their way through obstacles against the clock.
The event had two sections for thee-wheel and four-wheel
gophers. The first was taken out by Jarrad Hewett, while the
second went to Dave Schubert. It was significant that the
fastest time overall was Jarrad's on an old machine.
The Cittaslow Garden Group catered for lunch with a barbeque,
and local cafes and bakeries filled any culinary gaps.
While lunch was being taken, the F1 drivers took a few
practice laps to familiarise themselves with the new track,
and provide some colourful entertainment. The Renno entry
suffered electrical problems, and there was a flurry of action
in the pits to fix it.
Auntie Mary and Uncle Harry of Alex FM fame arrived, and
enlivened the afternoon with their unique entertainment.
The flag race involved business with golf clubs, and was won
by Dave Schubert on his big Shoprider.
Lap events followed, with Dave Schubert again dominating the
times. Carol Coventry took honurs in the three-wheeler class.
The final event for the day was the Formula 1 Grand Prix. Five
teams battled it out for top honours. Fiori driven by Carol
Coventry, Red Ball driven by Eric Rodda, Merciless-McLarry by
Steve Rhodes, Renno by Edward Booth, and, just to see what
happened, Dave Schubert on his standard Shoprider! Speeds
upward of 30kph were reached as drivers pushed their machines
to the limit. The winner was Edward Booth (Renno), followed by
Carol Coventry(Fiori), Eric Rodda (Red Ball) and Steve
Rhodes(Merciless-McLarry). Fifth place
went to Dave!
Flagman, Scott Woodsmith flagged home the winner as his last
colourful duty of the day.
The F1 Gophers must be constructed on a commercial scooter
frame, using an original scooter motor. The rules allow
constructors to modify the electrical and electronic
components to achieve greater speeds, and the bodies can be
anything within set size limits and weights.
The Festival closed at 2:30pm with thanks to the sponsors,
participants and helpers, and a spontaneous vote of thanks
from the participants.
In spite of the gloomy weather forecast, it was a perfect warm
day for Goolwa seniors, who not only had fun, but learnt to be
better riders too. The seniors did what they do best. Win or
lose, they had fun.
Edward Booth, March 2012
This report is available as
Off to a great start.
Swap the golf clubs...
Edward Booth with Flagman Scott Woodsmith.
Eric Rodda - Senior ? ... yes !
Some needed just a little help!
Edward Booth on "Renno" coming in for a flying finish - out the
Carol Coventry on "Fiori".
Lunch and produce stall, plus event registration.
The Gymkhana track... don't knock those bottles off
- the video will show the action.
Edward Booth with Alex FM's Richard Kleinig.
In the Pits.
Another view of the Pits.