Our Registrar, Paul Money has kindly drafted a superb newsletter giving the latest information on the Register for Winter 2018. Includes details about upcoming events, including the Restoration Show at the NEC in March! Click on the link below!
Happy New Year! Here we are again at the start of another busy year. Please find included our events calendar for the coming year. These dates are correct at the time of writing but any alterations will be published in future updates and on our Facebook group/website. Having been absent for the last couple of years, we start 2018 by heading back to Stoneleigh on 11th February for the MG & Triumph Spares Day. We won’t be at Brooklands this year for their MG Era Day. However, we will be returning for a second year to the NEC over the weekend of 23-25th March for the Classic Car & Restoration Show. The 2018 Racing Championships begin the following month with Silverstone hosting the first round on 7th April. We will be present at all the race meetings again this coming year – organising the lunchtime parade laps. The Pride of Longbridge event held in Cofton Park on 14th April completes a very busy month. Having tried some new things last year, and we wanted to push the boundaries a little further this year. Our ‘MGs in the Weald’ was a very popular day out, so this year we are having ‘MGs in the City’ at the Coventry Motor Museum in May. Our arrangements with the CMM are still being finalised but it should shape up to be another great family day out – watch this space. Later the same month we will be joining the Sussex Austin Rover & MG Owners Club for their road run. We are having an Open Day at Kimber House on 24th June, and heading north on 19th August to the Lakeland Motor Museum. We are also pleased to announce that MG Saloon Day will returning for 2018. Arrangements are still being discussed for this event but you will be notified of the details in due course. We will also be returning to Lancing on 14th October for their Motor Show. The year concludes with the Classic Motor Show at the NEC in November. Phew, I think that’s the highlights! Time to get those diaries!
Our Secretary Ray Kemble has written an amusing and interesting insight into his ZED entitled “The Loch Ness Monster Revealed- Part 1”
For many years now, people have been subjected to incongruous sight of the Secretary of the ZR/ZS/ZT Register tuning up to events in a white MG TF. There were rumours floating around that he did own a ZS, but no one had ever actually seen it and its existence was put in the same category as the Loch Ness Monster and flying saucers. Now measures are afoot to reveal this mythical creature in all its glory.
The reason for this is that my 5-door ZS 180 in trophy blue was subject to a number of unfortunate events. First I managed to damage the rear spoiler and tailgate backing into a sign post on a dark wet night in a Heathrow car park. Then. one night returning home I was negotiating a flooded road when I was hit by the bow wave of a truck going in the opposite direction. When I got home there was a knocking sound coming from the engine. Next day I tried to investigate the problem only to find that the cable had come adrift from one of the bonnet locks and the bonnet could not be opened. So the car was put in the garage and my old well used MGF pressed back into service out of semi-retirement. It became one of those things that one day you’ll get around to and the ZS languished in the garage for nearly 10 years. During this time the MGF gave up the ghost and I had to spend the money that would have paid for getting the ZS back on the road on a new TF LE500. The battery went flat and a couple of attempts made to get the bonnet open but there were always more pressing things to do. And so the ZS passed into its mythical status.
Getting the ZS which now resembled a barn find back into service became a project that I decided I would get around to one day. This year at MGLive! the resolve to do something was stronger than ever. I was aware of Beech Hill Garage; they are reasonably local to me and have a good reputation for restoring MGs of all ages. So I made enquires at their stand and following that called them on the Monday morning. Despite being very busy a plan of action was agreed that the car would be collected on the Tuesday and taken to Beech Hill for an assessment. After that it would be returned until it could be taken on as an over winter project. So the car was picked up on the Tuesday and trailered to Beech Hill for assessment. Over the next week they went over the car with in detail to see what work was needed. The good news was they had managed to get the bonnet open. The bad news was that they had run up the engine and that the knocking was coming from the bottom end of the engine and it appeared that a bearing had gone. A new engine would be required. They also came up with a long list of stuff that need to be replaced, including, alternator, discs and hubs where they had seized together, rubber suspension bushes, wheels and tyres. Anthony Allen of Beech Hill gave me an estimate for the work expecting me, I think, to say the car was not worth it and to scrap it. However my reasoning was that I needed a new car and I couldn’t see anything new that particularly inspired me, so I could use the same money to get the ZS restored.
In fact the car had a number of things it its favour as being a suitable subject. It is an early model 5-door 180 which makes it unusual. Added to that, when I bought it the budget was originally for a new MGF, but the ZS was much cheaper and so I had ticked all the optional extras. So it has a sunroof, rear head restraints and electric windows all round; all of which adds up to a fairly rare car. So it was agreed to go ahead and get the work done. With all these factors and that the car had great history in that I had owned it since new, Beech Hill became very enthusiastic about the project. They put a plan together to start straight away with the aim of having the car finished by the end of September.
One thing to sort out was the broken spoiler and dented tailgate. Trawling the Internet, I found a tailgate in the correct trophy blue colour complete with large spoiler on eBay. The only problem was it was on buyer collect in Wisbech which is quite a way from where I live in North Hampshire. After discussing with Beech Hill it was decided to purchase the tailgate as the price being asked was reasonable if only for the spoiler. So one Saturday I hired a van and leaving very early drove to pick up the tailgate leaving enough time to get back to Beech Hill before they closed at lunchtime. The seller of the tailgate turned out to be a guy who specialises in breaking MG Rovers. He had a number of Zeds and MGF/TFs that he was working on. I took his contact details as he may be useful to know in the future. They looked at the tailgate and decided it was in better condition than the one on my car and will be swapping it over.
The engine was stripped down to basics and shipped off to be exchanged for a refurbished unit. This has been fitted and the car once more is able to move under its own power.
When the engine was run up for the first time they also found that the throttle was jammed open so the engine raced away. The throttle body was corroded so a new one was needed. The garage were expecting another ZS to come in and they were planning on breaking it for spares. The throttle body from that car was earmarked to replace mine. In the event, that ZS proved to be a runner so they decided to save and restore that ZS as well. Finding another replacement proved to be difficult and in the end they got a local engineering company to clean up mine. However the throttle still sticks when release slowly. This may free up with usage but it still may be necessary to find a replacement.
In replacing the engine one of the oil cooler pipes was found to be corroded. Beech Hill were unable to find a spare but they had a contact would could make the pipes to order and they got one built by them.
The body work has been looked at and is generally OK, but there are some dents and scratches that will need attention. The garage commented that there were some curious scratches on both c posts that they couldn’t account for. I managed to solve the mystery by confessing to them that I had been dumping the hardtop from the MG TF on the back of the car in the summer as I had nowhere else to put it. With the garage now unencumbered by the ZS I took steps to prevent any similar problems in future. Using a set of MG Rover hardtop wall brackets and a pulley system designed for hanging a bike in the roof I have rigged up a system to keep the hardtop in the ceiling of the garage when off of the car, leaving room to put the ZS or the TF underneath.
Due to the problems in sourcing some of the parts the end of September target has been and gone and the costs have risen much above the original estimate. This seems par for the course for restorations. I still hope to have the car ready for Christmas and since the original plan was to have the ZS for MGLive! in 2018 that’s OK. We would also like to have the car on our stand at the MG & Triumph Spares Show in March and the Practical Classics and Restoration Show.
Anthony at Beech Hill tells me that the ZS has already been the subject to a lot of interest. People seeing the car are dismayed at seeing yet another zed “being broken for parts”. Anthony is quite happy to point that “No, this one is being saved and restored”.
To be continued…..
As I write our final newsletter of the year, the Classic Motor Show at the NEC is just over a week away. This show will bring the curtain down on our events for another year, but what a fantastic year it’s been for the Register. In the background the work continues over the winter months as we plan ahead for the coming year aided by the continued support of the Kimber House team. It’s been a busy time for the committee with each member undertaking on their own projects to ensure the Register keeps moving forward, and the momentum we’ve gained so far this year continues.
This year has seen some new relationships created within the classic car world. Classic Car Weekly’s use of a ZR in their ‘£500 Challenge’ was a great opportunity for us to forge a link with them. This relationship culminated in having their ZR on our stand at the Classic Car Restoration Show in March. A number of companies agreed to sponsor some of our events including Peter Best Insurance Services and Rimmer Bros.
Our taste for trying new things continued after our last newsletter in June. We had a very successful, and a very hot, MGLive! with a great turnout of Zeds on both days exceeding the space in our parking area. July was a busy month even without an MG Saloon Day. We headed to Penshurst Place in Kent for the SE Centre’s Summer Gathering at the end of the month – an event the register has supported on a number of occasions in the past. Our final ‘new’ event of the year was the Lancing Motor Show in October. We were more than happy to jointly represent the MG Rover era at the show together with some local enthusiast groups. With over eight hundred cars present and a great day out, the show has been included in our events calendar for 2018. We enjoyed another exciting year of racing too which was brought to a close at Snetterton in October. Next year we will be present at all the race meetings and will be organizing the lunchtime parade laps.
A vast number of new members have joined the club with a Zed this year, or have seen us at a show and are interested in the Register and what we do. The number of members who have joined our Facebook group is a reflection of this – this is very gratifying to see. Our Zeds are now becoming classic cars in their own right and it’s great to see such enthusiasm amongst the visitors at our events and shows.
Our events calendar for next year is almost complete. We are just waiting to confirm a few more dates. Once completed the list will be published in an upcoming Register update. We aim to take the Register out to the members next year with some new venues and exciting locations. Look out for any up-to-the-minute information on our Facebook page or website.
Finally, we’d like to wish you all a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year. And to thank ALL of you for your continued support throughout the past year. See you all in 2018.
John Thompson, Chair.
At the very end of September Snetterton staged the traditional finale to the MGCC racing season. This year was largely dry on Saturday and wet on Sunday. There were plenty of Zeds on show and it was good to see the two Trophy drivers involved in the Oulton Park shunt both in attendance. In a damp qualifying session Doug Cole took pole for both races, winning the second race, but beaten to the line in Saturday morning’s race by Ross Makar. It was Matthew Turnball in the 160 class who was declared 2017 champion at the prize presentation at the end of the day. There was also a special presentation for Peter Macwaters who stood down as Championship Coordinator after ten years. A good end of the season too for Ian Dowler in the Peter Best Cup with a second-place behind Alan Brooke’s very rapid K-Series Metro in the final round. His 160 coming home ahead of not only the other 160s but the 170s too. It’s noticeable that more 160s are being attracted to this championship. So, another excellent racing season has been brought to a close. Most drivers interviewed at the prize giving said they’d be back next year. Much work to be done over the winter months no doubt! The parade laps coordinated by Geoff were popular too with twenty-nine cars signing up on the Saturday, but probably due to the weather there were no takers on the Sunday!
The following weekend on Sunday 8th October we headed down to Lancing in Sussex for their Motor Show. The was a first for ourselves so it was a ‘test the water’ kind of a day. The event is open to all classic cars and in the end over eight hundred cars were present. We felt it was important to fly the MG Rover flag at this event and to promote the club. The gamble paid off however and we signed up one new member. We were joined in the MG Rover area by some local enthusiast groups, and between us we put on quite a large display. Our cars may have made up a small percentage of the overall show but we felt it was important to be seen at this event. The weather was on our side too with no rain and sunny periods. Definitely an event for the diary next year I think.
EVENTS & SHOWS
The penultimate rounds of this year’s Racing Championships continued on the 2nd September
at Oulton Park in Cheshire. A grid of thirty-two cars in the Trophy race were in prospect for
visitors, but unfortunately for the second time this year, an accident occurred in the Trophy
race with one of the competitors being airlifted to hospital. A big shunt occurred during the
first lap of the race – thankfully the driver involved will be okay. In the Peter Best Cup,
Register Treasurer Peter Burchill achieved second place overall. First place went to a
Tomcat, which are now allowed in the class, by a narrow margin of only 0.7 seconds.
We are giving a final call for the Lancing Motor Show which takes place on 8 th October. As
previously mentioned, will be going down there in full force with our gazebo etc to fly the
MG flag and promote the club, ourselves, and the Zeds in the world of classic cars. We still
have a number of Stand Passes left. If you are local or fancy a day by the sea please contact
either myself at the email address at the head of these notes or Paul Money at
email@example.com as soon as possible, there is still time to send one out to you. For
further information visit the official Lancing Motor Show page. The 2017 Racing
Championships then conclude at Snetterton on 30th October / 1st November.
EVENTS & SHOWS
The relatively quiet holiday month of August allows us to look back at the second half of
July. With the racing championships being north of the border at the beginning of the month,
the following rounds took place on 22 nd at the Cadwell Park circuit in Lincolnshire. We
decided a while back that after the success of taking our gazebo at Brands Hatch we would do
the same here and promote the Register to the members in the area. Overall the day was
warm and sunny. Fortunately we managed to dodge the rain until the late afternoon. A good
number of visitors took the opportunity to book in for the lunchtime parade laps, including
ourselves. Cadwell Park is nicknamed ‘the Mini-Nürburgring’ and having driven around it
you can see why – brilliant!
We then returned to Kent at the end of the month and joined the South-East Centre for their
Summer Gathering at Penshurst Place near Tunbridge Wells. We had a very relaxing day in
the company of the local car groups and the variety of MGs which attended. There was also a
discounted rate to the house and gardens which were well worth a visit.
Taking place over the same weekend as the Summer Gathering was the Silverstone Classic.
This event has been discussed by ourselves many times in the past. The main club attends as
do a number of registers. We might be adding this to our own events list next year. Those of
you who attended the weekend were in for a real treat in the form of Jason Hughes in the
BTCC Kartworld Racing ZS from 2002. According to the team working on the car in the
paddock, they were amazed just how much interest the ZS had created. In its current form,
it’s quite a hybrid. It has a 2000cc Judd engine, which is K-Series based, and not the its
original V6 engine. It also has a facelift front end and original rear. In a grid of forty cars
Jason qualified in nineteenth place, taking seventh place in the first race and ninth place in
the second race.
The racing championships continue at Oulton Park on 2 nd September and will literally be on
us when you read these notes. They then conclude at Snetterton over the weekend of 30th
October/1 st November. Before that however is another new event for us. On 8 th October, we
will be attending the Lancing Motor Show near Worthing in Sussex. We will be going down
there in full force with our gazebo etc to fly the MG flag and promote the club, ourselves, and
the Zeds in the world of classic cars. We have been given twenty-five Car Stand Passes by
the organisers which we will give out on a first-come first-serve basis. If you are interested in
attending please contact either myself at the email address at the head of these notes or Paul
Money at firstname.lastname@example.org and we will send them out to you. For further
information visit the official Lancing Motor Show page.
EVENTS & SHOWS
July was another busy month for Zed owners and it began in Scotland at the Knockhill circuit in Fife. Although not organised by the club a further two races from the Trophy Championship took place over the weekend of 8/9th July. Later the same month on 22nd, the racing championships continued at the Cadwell Park circuit in Lincolnshire. We were there of course organising the lunchtime parade laps but also with our gazebo and regalia to promote the Register in the area. We then returned to Kent at the end of July as we joined the South-East Centre for their Summer Gathering at Penshurst Place near Tunbridge Wells. There will a full account of these latter events in next month’s update.
We take a breather from events during the holiday month of August before heading to Oulton Park in Cheshire for the next rounds of the racing championships on 2nd September.
If you have recently joined the Register and wish to register your car with us, please contact Paul Money at the following: email@example.com . We also have the build-data for the entire production of Zeds if you wish to know more about your car. For further information and up-to-the-minute Register news please visit our Facebook group.
EVENTS & SHOWS
Having just returned from MG Live! at Silverstone to complete this month’s notes I can use three words to describe the weekend, hot, hot and hot! We’ve had all weathers over the years but this time we were blessed with the hottest days of the year so far. This reflected in gate numbers and turn out of Zeds. We had close to eighty cars in our parking area on both days which was fantastic. In the marquee, we held a celebration of our own, as it was fifteen years ago at MG Live! that the first meeting to create the new ZR/ZS/ZT Register was held. The revised layout of the site seemed popular too with many walking from the main marquee to the adjacent stand to watch the Trophy race in the shade. It was good to catch up with familiar faces and to introduce ourselves to new ones to enable us to keep moving the register forward. A number of people joined the club during the weekend and registered their Zeds with us at the same time. Thank you to committee member Louise Allen for displaying her Platinum Silver ZS 180 in the marquee over the weekend. It took pride of place on the time-road. Congratulations too for Louise in taking the ‘1st in Class’ prize in the Pride of Ownership on the Sunday with her stunning Trophy Blue ZR. We agreed that the weekend had been a great success for the Register in this our second anniversary year!
If you still wish to register your car with us, please contact Paul Money at the following: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Whilst at Silverstone we held our AGM after hours on the Saturday. The Chairman’s report concluded that the register has moved forward significantly in the last twelve months. Our numbers have increased, we’ve built new relationships with people and organisations within the classic car world which will enable us to continue moving forward. We’ve taken the Zeds to new places & events, and will continue to do so. We aim to build on these experiences during the forthcoming year. We would like to welcome Karen Stone to the committee. Karen will be taking on the role of Regalia Coordinator. In the coming months, we will be sourcing some new clothing, introduce some new smaller items of regalia and coordinate our efforts with Kimber House and the online shop. Ian Kimpton who joined our committee at our last AGM in 2016 will be taking on the role of Social Media Coordinator and will be looking after our website. The remainder of the committee will be continuing in their current posts.
With the main event now behind us our busy year continues with three events taking place during the month. For the racing fans amongst you, the club Championships continue on the 8th/9th July in Scotland at the Knockhill circuit in Fife. Later in the month a further racing round takes place at the Cadwell circuit in Lincolnshire. We return to Kent at the end of July as we join the South-East Centre for their Summer Gathering at Penshurst Place near Tunbridge Wells. We hope to see you at some of these events.
Looking ahead we have MGLive! later this month, and as many of you will now have realised there is no MG Saloon Day this year, but the event will return bigger and better next year. Moving forward to the end of July to an event which was not on our original calendar for the year – we have been invited by the South East Centre to their ‘Summer Gathering’ at Penshurst Place on 30th
EVENTS & SHOWS
The annual Pride of Longbridge gathering took place on 16th April near Cofton Park.
Moving forward to the weekend of 30th April/1st May we arrive at Brands Hatch for the next rounds of the 2016 racing championship.
We will be having our AGM late on the Saturday during MG Live! The time and location of which will be confirmed in due course. If you wish to attend please ask a member of the committee for details.
EVENTS & SHOWS
There seems to be so much to write about from April I hope I can fit it all in. Our calendar began at the NEC over the weekend of 31st March – 2nd April for the Practical Classics Restoration Show. This show was a first for us – but all the preparation and behind-the-scenes work paid off and we had a very successful weekend. The two cars we had on display – Louise’s stunning Trophy Blue ZR pulled in an admiring audience, as did Classic Car Weekly’s ‘£500 Challenge’ ZR 105 in British Racing Green. We would like to thank David Simister and his team for loaning us their ZR for the weekend. The ‘temporary’ Rover 25 front was very much a talking point from all our visitors. Several new members joined the club with Zeds over the weekend, so welcome to all of you. We agreed that the reception of the Zeds at this show in their home town had been fantastic. During the three days, several people stopped to chat and said they had worked on the Zeds at Longbridge and were delighted to see them so popular and enter the classic car arena.
Meanwhile on the Sunday Zed owners headed for Brooklands Museum in Surrey for their MG Era Day. Overall the day was a success with a healthy number of visitors, although we did feel a bit out of the way round by the F1 display. We did however have a nice patch of grass to park on with room for only ten cars. Other visiting Zeds parked on the banking. But it’s the overall ambience and charm of Brooklands that makes for a very relaxing day.
The following Sunday(9th), the first rounds of the 2017 Racing Championships took place at Donington Park circuit with what must be a record number of Zeds. No fewer than sixty-one ZRs and ZSs were entered for the day’s races. All made the grid except for David Coulthard’s ZR 190 which blew its engine in qualifying. Thirty-three ZRs started in the Trophy races. Pole man Ross Makar finished third in both with wins going to Doug Cole and Graham Ross. Jack Roberts and Paul Luti scored in the very competitive 170 class with two firsts for Matt Turnbull in the 160s.
The Cockshoot Cup attracted five ZSs and four ZRs. The ZR 180 of Ashley Woodward finishing ahead of the similar machine of Philip Bowden. Fifteen ZRs and three ZSs were among the starters for the Peter Best Cup. David Mellor’s ZR achieved second place and there was a creditable fifth place for the leading ZS of Register Treasurer Peter Burchill. The racing continues at Brands Hatch.
On Easter Saturday, we returned to Birmingham for the Pride of Longbridge gathering. There will be a full account of this event in the next update together with the how the racing went and Brands Hatch.
With ‘MGs in the Weald’ only a few weeks away there is still time to book on one of the two brewery tours taking place that day. Please contact Andy Knott directly at Kimber House to book your places. We will be having a specific parking area for modified cars, show cars and Monogram cars on the station concourse. If you plan to bring any of these to the event please contact either myself or Paul Money so we can take your details and direct you into position on the day. Paul can be contacted on email@example.com . Many thanks
EVENTS & SHOWS
Our first events of the year will have just taken place when you read these notes. The Practical
Classics Restoration Show took place over the weekend March 31 st – 2 nd April. While in Surrey
on 2 nd April Brooklands held their MG Era Day. There will be a full account on both these events
in next month’s update.
April is going to be another busy month for the Register as we travel in all directions to different
events. We begin at Donington Park on 9 th for the first racing rounds of 2017. After a close finish
in the Trophy Championship at Snetterton last year, how will this season begin? It’s looking to
be another large grid of ZRs again this year. Also at Donington will be the first round of the 2017
Cockshoot Cup. Our Treasurer Peter Burchill is preparing for the first of six rounds which will
conclude at Croft circuit on 16/17 th September. We are organising the lunchtime parade laps this
year – so please find Geoff to sign on for this unique opportunity to view the track from the
drivers-eye view. Please bring your membership cards with you as membership numbers will be
recorded on the forms this year.
The following weekend we head home to Birmingham for the annual Pride of Longbridge
gathering on Saturday 15 th . There has been a lot of interest in this event on social media over the
last couple of months and the turn-out is expected to be very impressive. Bearing that in mind we
advise arriving early as there will be a queue to get in. We will have our flag and banner up so
hopefully we will be fairly easy to spot on the field. Let’s hope the weather is kind to us this
At the end of the month the racing continues as we head to Brands Hatch racing circuit in Kent
for a full weekend of action. The weekend this year has been designed to be a mini MG Live!
The club will be having their sales stand there and so will we. There will also be a dedicated
space for MGCC parking together with the lunchtime parade laps. The Triple M Register and
ourselves are getting behind this event, and we will be supporting the teams in the Trophy
Championship. The club has secured a 20% discount on ALL entry tickets this weekend. If you
live in London or the south east, please come along – we’d like to put on a huge display of Zeds
– many thanks.
REGISTERING YOUR CAR
If you have recently joined the Register or have changed your Zed then please contact our
Registrar Paul Money at the following: firstname.lastname@example.org . We are currently in the
process of updating our database. We’d like to welcome all the new members who joined us over
the winter. Paul also has the build-data for the entire run of Zeds. If you would like to know
more about the about your Zed, then contact Paul at the above. Please use your membership
number in all correspondence. See you next month……
With our events season beginning at the end of the month I thought I’d take the opportunity to tell you about one of them taking place during May. ‘MGs in the Weald’ is a new event for us and has been organised by ourselves. It’s taking place at Tenterden station on the Kent & East Sussex Railway, near Ashford. The K&ESR is one of the leading heritage railways in the country and has played host to a number of car enthusiast groups in the past. We first approached them during the summer last year and we found them very enthusiastic and accommodating. Since then our plans for the event have evolved into an exciting family day out. We also approached the neighbouring micro-brewery who are kindly opening especially for us and will conduct two guided tours for visitors on the day. Continue reading
The ZR/ZS/ZT Register 2017 calendar is now available. Click here to have a look at what promises to be a busy year for Zed owners!