RECENT PAST EVENTS
Torque Tube Run to Avenel
Sunday 10th February
Story by Brigitte Bolonis Photos By Angelo Monteleone
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The first Torque Tube Run of 2019.
Meeting at Degani Cafe, University Hill, we excitedly exchanged greetings, initiated introductions and commented on the brilliant day Melbourne had presented us. 36 people and 20 cars rocked up as Angelo welcomed us, handed out the course directions, explained the events of the day. He then went on to mention Ivan’s misfortune the previous day. His side mirror on his 928, whilst parked in the Safeway carpark was damaged and taken off. Now if Ivan truly loved his Porsche why didn’t he park in the furthest corner away from any other car! Or was this just a ploy to get one of the prizes of the day?
The sun came out as we headed down Plenty Road. A convoy of Germany’s finest engineering marvels. Heads turning as the engines roared, that sweet symphony of aural noise. Taking the lead was Mark in his brilliant blue Cayman S.
As we headed to Yea, through Kinglake West & Flowerdale, the clouds began to warn us that the previous day’s Porsche wash and polish may have been in vain. This however would not deter the group, as we picked up speed and broke away into 2 groups – the heavy footed and those that were happy just to be out with their machines, partners and friends.
The sun then began breaking through the tree lined countryside. Road signs warned us of the Australian wildlife nearby. We saw an eager group of mountain bike enthusiasts making the most of the glorious summer’s day and passed some keen road cyclists pumping hard to get up a steep incline. It made me feel like I should be exercising more but it quickly left my mind as the enjoyment of driving was far greater.
As the tyres became one with the road we became one with the car and a harmonious flow began. Leading the pack the first 4 cars, comprising of 2 Caymans, a 964 and a Boxster, enjoyed some spirited driving, separating them much further from the main pack.
We arrived at our first stop, the Yea Bakery. There was lively chatter consisting mainly of Porsche stories, as new friendships were being forged over a few coffees and tarts. Back to our Porsches, we zeroed our speedometers, opened sun roofs and roofs down on the convertibles as we began the drive to our final destination Avenel.
We headed down the Goulburn Valley Highway before taking a turn into a 68km road of pure driving bliss - a smooth, wide, sweeping road with very few crossroads and no one coming the other way. We awakened sleeping cattle with the methodical loud hum of the Porsche brigade which accompanied our entourage.
Passing the Old Jug which boasted 1000+1 jugs, we slowed from an exhilarating speed to just 50km. As we began to increase our speed again, locals pulled over to let our procession of classic Porsches through. Cockatoos flying overhead, the picturesque landscape and the sun coming though made truly brilliant conditions for a Sunday drive.
The first 5 Porsches arrived at Avenel in good time. Dead bug inspections in the air intake vents and headlights were carried out. Accolades were made about the drive, while we waited for the second group to turn up.
Once we all arrived, we made our way to the tables arranged for our group in the tranquil gardens under a beautiful massive old tree, at Bank Street Wood Fired Pizza and Gardens. We continued the ideal chatter, the story telling, the laughter becoming louder and friendships became stronger.
Angelo presented prizes for the day. Phillip & Brigitte for volunteering to write this diary entry. (We’ll let you be the judge as to whether it was worth a prize!) Nadine our hostess for the day was asked to choose a worthy recipient of a prize based on which car she liked. After a close inspection she chose Carl’s 356 Super 90 stating she is a classic kind of girl. Last prize of course went to Ivan for parking too close to non-Porsche lovers. Ken made a speech. Photos were taken. More eating and drinking. More laughing and mingling. Then it was time to say good bye and head back home.
Thank you to Angelo for his organizational skills, hard work and diligence and the route organizers Mario & Stef Malavisi for a marvelous back road blast.
We may not all know each other but the one thing that connects us is our Porsches. Until we meet again happy travels.
Combined Boxster/Cayman and Torque Tube Run to Flinders Ranges
Sunday 18th November 2018
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Boxter/Cayman and Torque Tube Run to Flinders Hotel.
Story by : Yannick Anderson
McDonalds Mulgrave carpark was a buzz with 26 various Porsche's jostling for a carpark as we arrived in our 964. I immediately said to myself- This is going to be a great day out.
Angelo and Richard gave our briefing and new members were welcomed.
Angelo informed us that he had not done the drive notes for this run; therefore we were all in for a good day with no excuses for getting lost. If however, someone did manage to get themselves lost, we were to blame Richard.
The drive took us on some great roads east towards Upper Beaconsfield. 1st Stop was Tooradin Bakery for coffee and a regroup. Tooradin Bakehouse was situated near the. Koo Wee Rup Tarago Reservoir which is a lovely spot for a picnic under the tree’s .
Being locals we found ourselves leading the pack along familiar roads towards Flinders. Arthurs seat road is always a challenge, depending on your timing. Mine was bad with a slow car in front, but Angelo tells me he was behind Jane Hallam's Ferrari 599 and Kane Wilsons Boxster GTS, howling and crackling up the curves enjoying the sound and watching many day trippers spinning around from their view of the peninsula .
Some members had not been so lucky with Glen Smith’s 928 accelerator getting stuck full throttle and had to pull out and Andrew and Elizabeth‘s Boxter and I quote as it was said to me” broke down and ran out of drive and went into crawl mode”
They were hopeful that they could make it home.
Fortunately the Flinders Hotel Peninsula room was able to accommodate all 52 of us , which as a very large group meant we could catch up with old friends and made new ones over a few pre-lunch drinks.
We were given a choice of seven mains and four deserts which all promised to be excellent. My seafood Linguine was to die for! Overhearing comments from the room it seems that everyone was satisfied with their meals.
After the main course Angelo and Richard organized the raffle .The prize being two rare peninsula wines and two wines from Europe, which were kindly donated by the Flinders Hotel,
The happy winners were Carlo Fasolino, Carlo Cimino, and Tony Federico all very content with their top shelf wines.
I gracefully volunteered to write this story when Angelo put up a rare Austrian Riesling. Ok so I can be bought. …Lets move on.
We all enjoyed desert and after sharing some more “Car Talk”etc. it was time to head home.
Having helped with many Porsche runs over the years I appreciate how much time and effort goes into these runs. I would like to say thank you to Angelo Monteleone, Ivan Romanic, Richard Catchlove and Kane Wilson for their efforts resulting in a fantastic day for all who attended. Keep up the good work guys.
TorqueTube Morning run to Growling Frog Golf Course
19th August 2018
Story and Photos by Angelo Monteleone
As a winter’s day in Melbourne, it couldn’t get much worse than this for our morning run to Growling Frog Golf Course.
I was so surprised when 11 Porsches and their cold, wet owners showed up for breakfast at La Manna's green grocer and cafe at Essendon Fields. Clearly someone must have started a rumour that I was paying for everyone's morning tea or something, as even I was questioning the sanity of doing a run in these miserable conditions. My fears were allayed when the crowd assured me that Torque Tube owners were not too precious and didn't mind getting their cars wet and dirty.
Our start was delayed, when I found Tony Federico under his 911 Targa reconnecting his heater exchange pipes to get hot air in the cabin. I know these 1983 cars were quite analogue but that is ridiculous. With a quick brief in the carpark, it was every man and woman for themselves as we negotiated the Tulla Freeway north bound. Cars rounded up again as we headed into the back of Sunbury desperately trying to get some heat and grip into our tyres. Roads were clear with no floods or big puddles to watch out for, and everyone made it to the venue without incident.
Upon arrival, I was surprised to see my friends Nigel Watson and Kon Gogos causally having breakfast. I’m sure that I didn't take a wrong turn, which is usually mandatory on a Torque Tube run, and they certainly didn't pass me in these conditions so I happily named their table “The Cheaters Table” on account they took the path of least resistance and shortest google map suggestion.
The turnout of ladies attending was my biggest surprise with Mandy, Hermina, Filomena, Elisa, Stefania and Carol Wilson joining with their respective partners which was really nice given the miserable elements.
Growling Frog do a great breakfast and the staff looked after our group with prompt service, great coffee and the heaters turned up all the way. We spent the rest of the morning watching the kangaroos gathering on the golf greens as there were very few golfers having a tee off.
Upon return to the cars we found someone had scrawled the words "this 928 is dirtier than me" which Ivan was very offended by, as he has always claimed himself squeaky clean. Wonder which captain would have done that? Uhmm ….
Torque Tube Doing It “Italian Style” Torque Tube Register Run to Farm Vigano
Sunday 27th May 2018
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Story & Photos by Angelo Monteleone
A Melbourne autumn is the best time with the winter ahead, and it was a wonderfully sunny crisp Sunday for the Torque Tube lunch run with 18 Porsches gathered at River View Café for a coffee and de-brief of the run ahead.
We happened to get a tag along at breakfast in a Black 997CAB whom surprisingly has a few Porsches but wasn’t a member of Porsche Club Vic, so in my Torque Tube welcoming style , I invited him to join our run and hopefully sway him to become a member.
The first part led us through the twisty road of Christmas Hill, following into the back of the Yarra Valley through Chum Creek. Driving deep into the very curvy mountain pass of Tolangi sure gets the blood pumping especially when the rear steps out on a few slippery corners. Seeing your rear marker at 90 degrees isn’t for the faint hearted I can tell you for sure. Unfortunately a few back markers got stuck behind a horse float and I’m pretty sure I could hear the swearing echoing through the valley!
Having made it safely through, the morning pit stop was at the lovely township of Yea, where the locals were a bit star struck when 18 Porsches rolled in for a regrouping. There were all sorts of happy campers checking out our German machinery. Breakfast was at The Provender Country Bakehouse, famous for their meat pies having won an award or two over the years.
Leaving Yea, I soon found myself alone in front so decide to pull over and wait for the others to pass and have a bit of fun. As they all passed, I started from the back and finally managed to get behind John Gedye’s Boxster GTS with that sweet crackle sound that could be heard from over the hills. Unfortunately for Anna Cook and Michelle in a silver Boxster, they somehow started following our stray 997CAB whom was just an invited guest for the run and not for lunch. As he headed back to Yarrambat so did they, until he finally pulled over to inform them that they were heading in the wrong direction. Oops .
Farm Vigano was established through the once iconic restaurateur Mario Vigano of Mario’s restaurant in Exhibition Street with his wife Teresa. The service and food was fantastic with shared local farm produce and pizzas, and mains of lamb and porchetta roll. It was all finished off in Italian style with fresh ricotta cannoli topped with crushed pistachios. Yumm!
Farm Vigano was kind enough to donate 3 x $50 vouchers with whom we gave out and raffled off. Mario Malavisi won the 1st voucher for doing a great job volunteering to create the run notes for the day. In addition, our very attentive waiter Christian with the big gun arms helped pick the other winning tickets. 2nd prize with a big whine from the audience was co-captain Ivan Romanic and 3rd prize was Jonas Naarden.
Thanks again to all the attendees for making the day a real Porsche family day out. I could hear lots of catch up conversations and of course spirited debates about all thing Porsche of course.
Torque Tube run to the Farmers arms hotel BEEAC 2018
Story by Angelo Monteleone and Ivan Romanic
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Our first run of the year was to the lovely small township of BEEAC which Mr Ean McDowell has single handedly put on the car club map with his own private car museum at the rear of his pub. More on Ean later.
Whilst admiring the amount of Torque Tube cars present, I was shocked to see my friend Brettt varga roll up in a stunningly original 928S that looked straight out of risky business. He told us the story of how he called his mechanic at 8am on a Sunday to get the nod on buying the car immediately after seeing it on carsales. Yes that’s exactly what I do every morning too, “wake up, check carsales for Porsches, decide which to buy immediately, go back to bed”
After a team briefing at which I strenuously assured everyone that the run notes were correct this time I promise, but also with the caveat of a mandatory U-Turn with every run we were off. There were 26 Cars in tow with yours truly leading the pack. I must of Jinxed myself as at the 1st freeway exit I turned Right instead of Left. After about 5 km, I realised my error and quickly did a U-Turn, red faced after passing the five or so cars following. This mistake had its advantage’s as well as now I was challenged with catching up with everyone else that didn’t make my mistake and getting back to the front.
The run took us thru Yendon-Egerton, Mt Buningong and ROKEWOOD township towards Colac. With every township, I kept catching the backmarkers working the steering wheel and accelerator feverishly to catch and pass with every opportunity. I felt like Nikki Lauda trying to catch James hunt in the 1976 Brands-hatch GP. I was almost at the front with 20km to go, and then I tucked into the back of Jonas Naarden with his RatRace 944S. No matter how hard I tried he just wouldn’t let me pass. It was lots of fun I must say and the victory to him on our arrival into BEEAC.
The story of the Farmers Arms hotel is an interesting one indeed. Mr Ean McDowell came to BEEAC looking for a cheap warehouse to store and work on his many cars. After viewing the storage shed, he retired into the BEEAC hotel/pub for a meal and a beer and met the owner. A few more beers later, he walked out buying the storage shed and the hotel in one swoop. He quickly involved his family and set about creating a beautiful museum at the rear with the intention of using it as his showpiece for the hotel.
Ean took us for a tour of the rear Museum and described his many restored cars from his 1937 Riley that was his 1st purchase at age 17, to his Bugatti type 34 replica , and an ASA 1000GT (Autocostruzioni Società per Azioni) that was developed by Ferrari, and featured a 1,032 cc four-cylinder engine designed by Ferrari Engineers but never carried the Ferrari badge.
He enthralled us with his many stories of how he came to own such amazing cars, including his 3 day flying trip to France upon hearing about this special Ferrari ASA from “The French Postman”. Upon arriving in Paris, he was driven around to look at cars by these 2 guys who barely spoke English and Ean didn’t speak French – but somehow they managed to find an amazing car, make a deal and ship the car back to Australia.
There was also his 1959 Stanguellini single-seater race car in which he competed in a few track and hill climb events before retiring from Motorsport. His daily drive is a 911 3.2lt Carrera which he told us has just clocked over 320,000km without a single thing wrong. That’s impressive.
His latest project is a FIAT Barchetta 1100 which he found on-line at ALFABB forum. After buying sight unseen from Italy, it was an absolute mess when received and he finished up by telling the audience that has just finished paying for 500 man hours of work just to get the all aluminium body perfect ready to paint in red livery.
Lunch at the BEEAC hotel was amazing for a country pub, and definitely worth a trip again to enjoy its great service, hospitality and good selection of food. I was amazed as the 45 minute turnaround for 42 meals which we ordered a-la-cart when we walked in. As is usual with a country pub, a good selection of beers were available. Myself and Ivan delivered a great speech and welcomed some 1st timers to the Torque tube run.
As we waved goodby to Ian’s bright yellow Ford GT40( replica) and his Porsche 911 3.2L Carrera sitting outside the BEEAC pub like you would normally find in front of any country pub-NOT, we left in a convoy of 6 x cars for a last squirt home .
It was a real pleasure organising the day out and from the accolades received, I think everyone had a fantastic day. Myself and Co-Captain , Ivan Romanic would like to personal thank all the attendee’s for making it a memorable one for the Torque Tube register.
Torque Tube Run to Macedon Wine Room
Sunday 27th August 2017
Story & Photos by Ange Monteleone, Tony Monteleone & Ivan Romanic
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The 27th of August was supposed to be almost the finish of winter, but in true Melbourne weather unpredictability, it turned on the full works for us.
We started the morning off at Essendon Fields with a fresh coffee and condiments breakfast from LaManna’s and looking out the window, the sun was shining brightly. I allowed this to lead me into a false hope, because no sooner had we started our journey northward, that the sky had changed from bright to muted grey. Clouds on the horizon indicated trouble ahead.
The weather pelting commenced firstly with high winds and then unpreparedness with hail followed by sleet and more rain. The wet weather driver training really paid dividends this day, as we aimed up through Oaklands Road towards Sunbury. Mother Nature wasn’t finished with us yet as we weaved in a procession over the Mt Macedon range. An obvious coldness descended and a change was afoot as the mercury level descended to 5° and it started to snow.
Snow, whilst cold and bitter when exposed to its elements has a more softness and cleansing experience when you observe it from a well heated comfortable sports car equipped with Michelin Pilot Sports as you negotiate the bends travelling through a winter wonderland. We are blessed that part of the design testing that goes into every Porsche is done within the Arctic Circle. The true DNA and mechanical insightfulness of Porsche engineering really showed through with our vehicles this day.
The good news story is that we all made it without any incident to our first designated stop being the lovely town of Trentham. Everyone was stoked at the diverse weather driving conditions just experienced and the conversation of its intricacies continued inside the very popular Red Beard Bakery, a town favourite.
John Gedye posed with a giant garden gnome outside the bakery and it was almost like looking at a self-sculpture….wow very strange. Co-Captain Ivan Romanic also had a doppelganger experience with an Orangutan sculpture, whilst Tony Monteleone was caught trying to kiss a sheep in the back of a ute. We really couldn’t blame him though as he is moving to New Zealand at the end of the year.
With coffee done and lots of fresh baked sourdough to take home, we sprung out of Trentham for a dosage of back road exhilaration. With the front markers being the Gedye’s Boxster/Cayman GTS commanding and acting as beacon for the road ahead, we were all playing catch-up with our Torque Tube cars. My favourite moment was when Richard Greenman in his GTS spearheaded passed me like the Concorde with afterburners at take-off. Wow that was quite an experience as my 944 S2 swayed at the turbulence created.
It would not be a Torque Tube event without a mishap as Ken Mariott and Willie Gulbransen coasted passed the bus shelter marker that was supposed to be the turn right point into Woodend with five back markers following. His excuse later at lunch, is that bus shelters are always silver in colour where he comes from, not green, so he missed it. Ummm plausible, he is, after all, from New Zealand.
Lunch was at the fabulous Macedon Wine Room, which has one of the best vistas of the Macedon Ranges. The panorama coupled with a few delectable vinos beside the snug fireplace and a scrumptious entrée and mains made for an outstanding afternoon. The Cone Bay Barramundi was delightfully tasty and accompanied with the salsa verde and potato puree was a meal both simplistic and inspiring.
There were a few newcomers recognised after lunch, namely Mark Sedon and Filomena Molinaro in their 996. We almost convinced them that as newbies and as a general rule to solidify their initiation to PCV they were obliged to buy a round of drinks for our table. This was short lived as Filomena caught me winking in the direction of Co-captain Ivan during the speeches.
Dessert was served and everyone sang and crooned Happy Birthday to my beautiful wife Mandy as a delicious profiterole cake with candles was being presented to her. The day ended needlessly too short as it always does when you are having fun with great friends and company. See you all again at the next Torque Tube social run. Until next time, au revoir.