Auto collectors club names its trophy winners for 2020-21

The Auto Collectors Club of Murray Bridge has handed out its annual awards, and heard from Graham Hallandal about his years at GM Holden.

This post was contributed by Graham Edwards and Elaine Bretag of the Auto Collectors Club of Murray Bridge.

Claude Minge presents Peter Geue, a previous winner, with a keepsake to replace the perpetual trophy he passed on at a recent presentation night. Photo: ACCMB.

Sixty Auto Collectors Club of Murray Bridge members and guests have congregated at the newly renovated Murray Bridge Golf Club to celebrate the club’s 49th annual presentation night.

It was the first in two years because of COVID restrictions.

General conversation about renewing acquaintances, COVID and the week’s rainfall set the scene for an enjoyable evening.

With all seated, club president Claude Minge welcomed those present, including guest speaker Graham Hallandal, his wife Brenda and family, past members and prospective members.

The main course meal of alternate-drop chicken and roast beef was served by the jovial, swift and polite waitresses for the evening, while “Barista Barry” manned the bar in between kitchen duties.

Gloria and Dennis Jackmann, Kevin and Helen Hosgood, Paul and Val Wade, David Smyth, Jan Hall and Yvonne and Peter Mach enjoy their meals. Photo: ACCMB.

Following the main course, trophies were presented by Mr Minge and his wife Liz, with the winners for 2018-19 being presented with their interestingly designed and coloured “keeper” trophies, a replacement for the perpetual trophies which they gave up on the night.

The winners of perpetual trophies for 2020-21 were:

  • Valvoline Trophy (most points scored for attendance): Jan Hall

  • Patron’s run winner: Jan Hall

  • President’s Trophy (for service to the club): Brenda Cowie

  • Sausage sizzle quiz winner: Maureen and Graham Edwards

  • Ladies’ day quiz winner: Liz and Claude Minge

  • Economy run (for the amount of fuel used on the run): Lyn and Tom West

  • Founder’s Trophy (most interesting run): John Courtney and Graham Edwards, for the Karoonda silo run

  • Mal Fountain run (completed during COVID based on an online guide): Maureen and Graham Edwards

As recipients admired their newly acquired trophies, sticky date pudding, fruit salad and ice cream were served.

It was then time for Mr Minge to introduce Mr Hallandal, the well known former businessman.

His subject was the 20 years he spent as an employee with General Motors Holden, between 1955 and 1975, accompanied by a Powerpoint presentation.

Beginning his working life as an apprentice fitter and turner with GMH, he worked his way up into positions as a draughtsman, then a senior cost estimator in the finance department at Fisherman’s Bend, until a transfer to the manufacturing department as a senior engineer, helping coordinate with Opel in Germany on the first Commodore.

One of his greatest experiences came with the Torana GTR-X project, which unfortunately – because of competing brands’ releases, at about the same time, of similar cars which cost much less – was shelved.

The only remaining GTR-X can be seen on display at the Birdwood Motor Museum.

The project’s failure was truly a disappointment for GMH fans at the time, including Mr Minge’s late father, Claude Minge senior.

At the conclusion of Mr Hallandal’s informative presentation, Mr Minge made a small presentation.

With the evening drawing to an end, he then gave a sincere thank you on behalf of all present to the golf club’s management, kitchen and bar staff for their hospitality, while thanking all for coming and wishing all a safe return home.

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