1st Annual Australian AMC/Rambler Show 2014


On the week end of the 15th of March, two good things happened, one I made it to 73 years of good living and two I went to the Chryslers on the Murray at Albury / Wodonga. This event thanks to Jason Chaplin, a member of the  Albury / Wodonga  club, was organised and run to a very high standard.

Jason who is currently restoring an AMC Hornet helped push for the AMC cars to be included in  the Chrysler family, and it was a very welcome home coming for all Rambler cars to find that we as orphans have been offered this life line to  help us keep our identity.

A total of 7 Javelins made the trip and Craig Norling & his wife Sue drove up Saturday to have a look also. ( in a Holden ! what was he thinking ?). I think he needed the wagon to take home all the parts that Jeff Fripp had available. I felt a head rush when I saw tables full of AMC parts from his company Rambler Spares. Parts that I would never have thought were available in Australia.  Admittedly lots were general Rambler parts but, if you are going up in the future and need something in particular, ring him and I’m sure he will bring it if he has it.

This was held as a 2 day event with the cars that entered for judging being judged on the Saturday and the main day was Sunday. Over 700 cars. A huge yellow & white tent was set up exclusively for the AMC enthusiasts and it was equal to the Chrysler tents. Also a main feature was the dyno engine test, at the reduced cost of $25.00, you could get a reading of the rear wheel horsepower output. I gave it a thought but decided it was a long way home if they over revved it.  As you could certainly hear some high revving strong motors, lots in the 400s, some in the 5s and a couple over the top in 6s +.

I must say I was surprised how the Chrysler boys welcomed us, the social activities at the end of the day was enhanced by the fact that I took a tent and camped in the middle of Chrysler world in Wodonga caravan park, in fact sharing a site with a guy from the Geelong Chrysler club, this resulted in some serious drinking at the hotel over the road Friday night and again on Saturday night with the Rambler Car club boys, who were all staying within 1 kilometre of me.

It was certainly good to meet the fellow javelin owners and 7 cars was a good start, perhaps next year we can do a lot better, I think we might have to hurry, as when you see cars like the brown javelin owned by Clem Smith and driven to the meet by one of his employees who helps look after his fleet of classic cars, it seems that people are slowly realising that a javelin looks nice in the private collection.

The Dickson Brothers Greg and Kurt were very interesting to listen to about how the Javelin performed in the Targa events, the mishaps and the necessity for superior braking and handling. Interestingly they have replaced the bonnet and the front bumper with fibreglass, and are talking of bigger brakes and wheels, to fit larger disks.

Gordon Pendlebury was also here with the burnt out shell of his stretch Matador hearse wagon, truly a sad sight, but he is fighting back and had a new large display trailer, full of car  memorabilia. He was getting a lot of attention and we hope people realised what he has been through. Glen Sneddon had his ,74 Gremlin drag car on display and every time he started it and drove around it created quite a stir. Supercharged to the max it was pogo stick hopping all around the place, with the motor not sure if it wanted to idle at 3000 rpm or nothing. This would be the ultimate bucket list for the standing 1/4 mile if you are game.

And finally the cars entered on Saturday to be judged were announced before a large crowd, gathered around the Chrysler tent and the announcer was Pinky (google him if you do not know him) and after what seemed an endless parade of Chrysler trophies, it finally got down to the AMC – best street class – 1st prize to Colin Main-President of the AMC Rambler car club of Australia, (not to be confused with the Rambler Car Club of Australia of which Colin is the Secretary), for his 2 door ,64 Classic hard top. And 2nd prize to Italo Ottone for his superb reddy/pink ,66 Classic sedan. 3rd prize was gratefully accepted by me. I think there would have been a total of 35 AMCs here of which about 15 were judged.

This event can only get better for us, if Jim Richards can be persuaded, and some AMXs and Javelins have their cobwebs dusted off, and either trailered or driven here, we can blow these Chryslers away. Let’s try for 2015.

The attached photos are a mix of some I have taken and some, courtesy of Colin Main. To see all the AMC cars check out the below forum courtesy of Jason Chaplin.   http://theamcforum.com/forum/1st-annual-australian-amc-rambler-show-albury-2014_topic49236_page14.html


Clem Smith


Graham's trophy Ray Ikin

There were a number of other members who attended the weekend but didn’t take their Javelins. These included Craig & Sue Norling and Neil & Lisa Hamilton. Sorry if I missed anyone…

2016 dates are March 18, 19 & 20 so put them in your calendar now.