Live-ish From New Zealand! Over 45 Photos!

New Zealand FBThanks to long time Woody Boater Phil Andrews for reporting in from the other side of the planet where its summer and proof that the little blue ball we all inhabit is made for all of us to enjoy woody boating!  Take it away Phil.
Thanks Matt
The 18th Annual Classic Boat show was held once again in the small lakeside town of St Arnaud on the shore of Lake Rotoiti. Registrations were up on previous years with over 124 boats signed up.


Classic boats of all shapes and sizes

I had just taken delivery of my Century Resorter 16 after she had had a new 5200 bottom installed by the talented boat builder Harry Nordberg, so that meant a ferry ride and a 2 hour drive to the lake for me.
I had hoped to have the Blue Grey Arabian ready for the show but with her new trailer still a month away from completion she had to stay home.
The show is a very low stress affair that takes place in the national parklands and also on the water. They have races for all classes, culminating in a drive by of all boats as the afternoon farewell.
This year there were many of the boats that come year after year and some eagerly awaited interesting new arrivals.

An 9.15am departure out of Wellington on the Interislander. The couple in front of me had towed their old clinker dingy from Warkworth in the far north to enter her in the show. Now thats commitment!

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It always makes me anxious having to park the truck and trailer tightly onboard next to massive trucks but so far ( touch wood ) the boats have been fine.

Arrived at Picton in the Queen Charlotte sounds at 12.30pm and set off through the famous Marlborough wine producing area and up into the mountains. The road is currently the only way to drive from Picton to Christchurch since the Kaikoura earthquakes damaged the main route so the traffic was heavy. The narrow winding road proving too much for this truck and trailer unit overturned 4 ks from St Arnaud.


Malolo a super cool old 1930’s boat built north of Auckland in a place called Kerikeri. Max and Ra the owners of this boat had just completed a full restoration of her. -8Max used to wag school as an 11 year old and hide out in this boat as it lay in the long grass of the paddock behind his home.


After many years of badgering the owner he finally sold it to Max ( now in his 50’s ) and they set about bringing it back to life. This weekend was the first time it had been in the water since 1947.

Jet boat ( #120 ) ‘Going Places’ was the first Jet boat in NZ to do 100mph. It achieved that in 1982 on Lake Ruataniwha with driver Blue Derry at the wheel.


PT-109 was a static display last year and this year she had power! A patrol boat made out of found crap in the back of the shed.


Monster green jet turbine boat didn’t run but we have been promised it will next year.


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Team Century lined up on the grass.


Phils amazing time capsule Palamino


Phils Resorter Next to his other Arabian. Yes Phil has Issues!


Phils Arabian, Not the Bue one, thats still at home as you may recall.

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Omerta a beautifully restored boat originally made in Hong Kong. Cool to see all the fittings in brass rather than chrome.

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Bruce Judge in Baby Thunder the replica Bootlegger built by Harry Nordberg. Bruce and Harry on the slip about to make some noise. ( Bruce in the cockpit and Harry in the background )

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This was Baby Thunder’s last splash in the lake as she is headed for Sierra Boat on Lake Tahoe in the next few months.

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Bel Air, the World Speed record holder had one run on Saturday morning but developed a problem that laid her up for the rest of the show.

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I was lucky enough to get a ride in Baby Thunder an experience I won’t forget in a long time. One word. Brutal.


My Love, CC Racing Runabout and Catherine 53 CC Riviera in the que to launch.


A line up on the shore with ‘Summertime’ a previous show winner in the foreground.

The start of the over 100hp powerboat race


Baby Thunder howling by my 58 Resorter 16 Principessa.


A great day in New Zealand! Thanks Phil!

I took ‘Sparkle Horse’ my 56 Palomino out super early Sunday morning on a lake with steam rising off the surface and the sun just kissing the tops of the mountains.

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15 replies
  1. Troy in ANE
    Troy in ANE says:

    Phil if I open a can of varnish and spill a little gas on the counter I would swear I was right there with you.
    Thanks for the great story!
    I love the variety of boats.
    Next year get us a video of that turbine running, that should be fun!
    Do I count 3 Centurys? Tommy Holmes must be proud.

  2. Jim Staib
    Jim Staib says:

    Wow! Whole different kind of show. No piers.
    Would be neat to see some of the tow vehicles. Lots of stuff that don’t make it up here.

  3. Mark
    Mark says:

    Great story Phil. The guy who helped me get my KL going had several 30 plus foot boats in his “garage” that he said were built in Australia. That was news to me.

    One question – is boating like toilets there ? Does the water come in through the exhaust and go out the water pump ?

  4. Dave Clyne
    Dave Clyne says:

    Thanks for the great photos of your Palomino. I can never get enough. You made my morning. I bleached mine yesterday, getting close to stain. You are an inspiration.

  5. Rick
    Rick says:

    Love the baby PT 109, very different. Phil this was a fantastic start to the day, thanks. Now just have to figure out how to “wag” work (love new terms) and go play with Panther.

  6. Rob
    Rob says:

    Eight times emerging from the flood
    She mewed to every watery god,
    Some speedy aid to send.
    No dolphin came, No NEREID stirred;
    Nor cruel Tom nor Susan heard;
    A favourite has no friends!
    Thomas Gray

    Check the name of the red boat in the second pic. Lovely.

  7. John Rothert
    John Rothert says:

    Really great story! Pics too!
    Like Jim said it is neat to see a totally different type of show…no piers…right on the beach stuff…neat.

    thanks for all the obvious effort you put into sharing this.

    John in VA

  8. Paul Thibault
    Paul Thibault says:

    Awesome boats! Great venue – nice to see such calm waters. Keep the pictures coming.

    Phil – great meeting you in NJ.

  9. Wylie
    Wylie says:

    Great show Phil. Attendees get to see boat launching and start up’s, always interesting and rarely a part of a northern Michigan show. Love the Thoroughbred’s, thanks for representing Manistee.

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