Summernats revs up for Malaysia debut

4 January 2014

Canberra's favourite car festival is going international, with the news on Friday of a Malaysian Summernats event planned for 2014.

Co-owner Andy Lopez was joined in making the announcement by Malaysian motor sport promoter J.P. Chin, whose company JPM Motorsport will help organise the event.

The new festival will take place from August 29 to September 1 this year.

''It will be an automotive lifestyle event, built on similar principles to the Summernats and will become a truly Asian horsepower festival,'' Mr Lopez said.

He also revealed that the top 10 cars of Canberra Summernats 2014 will be taken to Malaysia for the event.

''Planning has been under way for this new event since June 2013 where we staged an exhibition event at the Super GT event in Malaysia,'' he said.

The news came as motor enthusiasts enjoyed the first full day of Summernats 2014 on Friday.

Highlights included burn-out championship eliminations and the start of Horsepower Heroes, where drivers compete to see who owns the most powerful machine.

Many beaming car owners were content to brave temperatures of up to 33 degrees to show off their pride and joy.

Neville and Lyn Percival travelled more than 2500 kilometres from Cairns to show off their gleaming 1976 Toyota Corona. This was the car's 27th car festival, falling coincidentally on the 27th anniversary of Summernats. It was also Mr Percival's 55th birthday.

''Coming to Summernats is my birthday present,'' he said.

Although they have been to other car events across Australia, this is the first time they had come to Summernats.

''This is the big one,'' he said. ''This is also the furthest we've driven for a car festival.''

Among the huge number of revved-up cars on show, one black 1957 Chevy stood out. It featured a bright pink baby booster seat.

Canberran Danny Stevens, 28, said the car was originally his father's. His father had never missed a Summernats and helped found the burn-out event.

The Chevy has been in his family for more than 30 years and he said he hoped they would never get rid of it.

''I want it driven by my kids and my grandkids, [for] as long as we're allowed to have petrol engines,'' he said.

Some people were just there to see the machines in action. Daniel and Kylie Maynard from Mildura, Victoria, decided to stop over in Summernats with their children on the way to Batemans Bay.

They said that although they had barely stepped through the gate, already it had been a fantastic experience.

''It's been awesome so far: the noise, the cars and the burnouts,'' Mr Maynard said.

Nine-year-old Cooper loved the cars, with his favourite the Ford XYs. His brother Bowen, 7, said he preferred the Holden Torana. Unfortunately for the parents, there's some things on which they don't agree. ''She's a Ford girl and I'm a Holden man,'' Mr Maynard said.


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