78r Grant Savage
Hometrack: Paradise Valley Raceway, Rotorua
Savage by name and savage by nature, well on the track anyway! I remember a couple of years back going to a stockcar meeting at Paradise Valley and being shocked at how tame the racing was. I remember it caused quite a stir on the internet, but I'm guessing Grant can't have been racing that night. He is renowned as one of the great stirrers at the track, and has owned some of the coolest looking cars of recent seasons too. So I was really pleased to see on Facebook an update of a new car coming out of the workshop, a tank no less! I contacted the team with a few questions and Brendan Erskine-Shaw was able to give me some detail on what's going on:
"Yip, the car is Grant Savages new beast and he calls it a 'Flank' as it's a cross between a flat chassis and a tank, but it's more of a corrugated flatty then a tank to be honest, which is what he's so great at building. It's actually pretty similar to his son Tony's flatty underneath all the tank looking exterior. It's a stockcar not a super as you said and it will be Ford powered. He started work on the tank the week after easter and reckons he's put in around 160 hours so far. Not too far to go and should be ready for paint in the next couple of weeks.
The white chassis in the background is Kevin Free's old orange 36r Superstock that he owned. Grant never raced the car as a Super, he changed it to a stockcar and raced it for a season and now it's owned by a new driver who will hopefully have it ready for this season.
In the background is a chassis Grant used to own a long time ago and it's now back with him. He works on it when he finds spare time, not that he has a lot at the moment while building the tank. That one won't be ready for quite a while yet. I know plans may have changed for it now, and it might not have that VW body after all, but again I'm not entirely sure of that as it's all sort of on the backburner at the moment."
Thanks Brendan for the update and if you want to check out more photos and history, go to Grant's facebook page HERE. I've included a few 78r shots I've taken over the years below also. If you have a workshop update, sent me photos and a bit of info and I'll post them on the website. Contact me at firstname.lastname@example.org