Historic Winton and the New Generation of Race Competitors

Presented by the Austin 7 Club Inc in association with the HMRAV

4 May 2023

44th Historic Winton Car of the Meet: 1927 Alvis 12/50

Whilst the car, motorcycle and sidecar racers are keen to hit the track at Historic Winton on 27th & 28th May at Winton Motor Raceway, one thing is for sure, historic motorsport gets in the blood as the thrill of racing passes from fathers to sons and daughters.

John Davies of Perth (WA) has been racing at Historic Winton for decades but this year there’s a change of guard happening.

Melbourne-based grandson Harry McLarty will race John’s 1947 MG TC Special in the Lb Sports and Racing class, with John competing in the same car in Regularity* Two which is a slower paced time trial event.

“At 84, it’s time to step back and let my grandson compete in his first race at Historic Winton,” John said.  “I first raced in 1958 and even won a few prizes in the ‘80s.”

John said that he was particularly proud of the race car he bought three years ago that he rebuilt.

“The 1947 MG TC Special was created as a race car in 1948 and has raced on every track around Australia.”

The number of family members ‘taking the baton’ from Dads and Grandads shows that historic motorsport is alive and well.

Nathan Tasca and Dave Bishop, both from the Bendigo region, have motorsport in their blood.

They will compete against each other in Regularity* One at Historic Winton.

Nathan Tasca of Strathfieldsaye was born while his father was racing at Historic Winton in 1982.

“Dad was kind and stayed home on the Saturday to be with my Mum but raced the Sunday when I was born,” Nathan said. 

With the love of racing in his blood, Nathan first raced his father’s 1934 Singer Le Mans but has since restored a 1933 Singer 9 Sports that won the 1934 Australian Grand Prix.

“In 2022, the car was on the track for the first time since 1934.”

He said that the Singer has been a labour of love and he will once again compete in Regularity with other cars of this vintage.

Fellow racer, Dave Bishop of Epsom has been racing his late Dad’s car since 1989, a 1927 Austin 7 Special and his nephew has taken on his Dad’s second Austin 7.

But it’s not all about father-son handovers.  In 2018, Kathrynna Barnes of Wendouree won Historic Winton’s Car of the Meet and Best Presented Regularity Car with the head-turning 1933 Barnes Special Three-wheeler, built by her now late Dad, Raymond Barnes. 

A young mum, Kathrynna put in the ‘hard yards’ to compete in 2022 but will take a break this year.

“Dad wanted me to compete at Historic Winton when he was 90, and sadly he didn’t make it, but we are going to make the big effort and be there in 2024 in what would have been his 90th year,” Kathrynna said.

This is just a handful of examples of the family commitment to historic motorsport and one of the things that makes Historic Winton noted for its friendliness and camaraderie.

*Regularity events have the driver nominate the course completion time.  The drive

Discounted tickets and camping bookings for Historic Winton are available online at: ticketebo.com.au/historicwinton. Event tickets are also available at the gate.

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r with the closest time to their nominated time wins. This allows owners of older (and possibly very precious) cars to drive them at a pace, rather than risk them in race conditions.


Photo courtesy of Stephen Cooper






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Winton Motor Raceway, near Benalla, Victoria