George Begg Classic Speedfest

George Begg Classic Speedfest Southland

Jump in your time machine and join us at the George Begg Classic Speedfest.

It’s one heck of an annual tribute to a homegrown hero, dubbed the motorsport equivalent to Enzo Ferrari, and a golden age in Kiwi motorsport. 

The farmer-turned-engineer-turned-race-car-designer is one of Southland’s great heroes.

During the 1960s and 70s, George built some of the finest race cars of his generation out of a shed known as the ‘Toyshop’ in Drummond, rural Southland - a shed where no fewer than 18 single-seater race cars emerged to take on the world’s best and succeed.

The weekend is chocka with motorsport like it used to be – a feast of wholehearted racing between skilled drivers behind the wheels of beautiful, classic machines. 

Keen to learn more:

The on-track action is more than matched off-track where you’ll lose yourself in a carnival of fashion, food, drinks and fun. 

Dress to your favourite decade – let loose your swinging 60s spirit, throw on a fabulous dress, or dust-off that jacket and cravat combo. If the 80s is more your thing, a neat little double-denim number might be the ticket (the perfect complement to a Datsun 120-Y). Maybe you’d look rather dashing in some racing overalls? 

Let your imagination run wild.

Get trackside – listen to the crackle and feel the roar of thousands of horse-power flying down the Teretonga straight, with everything from Formula 5000s, historic touring, muscle and saloon cars, Formula Libre, vintage single seater racing cars, sports & GT cars, and many more.

You’ll have plenty of time to soak up Invercargill’s growing (and we reckon justified) reputation as the home of wheels – whether it’s cars, trucks or bikes.

In the evening, sit back and relax at the prizegiving dinner in the spectacular setting of Bill’s Shed, at Bill Richardson Transport World – one of the jewels in the Invercargill’s wheel-shaped crown.

Delve into the ‘George Begg Bunker’ exhibition at Classic Motorcycle Mecca housing the sleek, chisel-nosed racing machines engineered by Begg out of second-hand race parts – and featuring a lovingly recreated ‘Toyshop’.

The more you find out about George, the more his story draws you in. In between designing world-beating racing cars, this rural entrepreneur found time to design, patent and build some of the most innovative farm gear of his generation.

You’ll find out George was an author, a philanthropist – raising hundreds of thousands of dollars for charity – and a bit of a hardcase. 

If quirk appeals, you’ll find it around every corner, like the one about George importing tractors from the Soviet Union. 

While you’re here, why not check out George’s backyard, exploring the rugged coastline of The Catlins, the starry skies of Stewart Island/Rakiura or the majestic wilderness of Fiordland.

So fire up your sense of nostalgia for a trip back in time you’ll never forget.

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