All posts by gordon_boyce

Mid-Week Meander – Eastern Encircle

Wednesday 18th May – Meet 9.30am for 10.00pm departure

Russell and Judy Schmarr have planned another run for this month’s Mid-Week Meander.

Meet 9.30 am at the Main Oval Gates, Onkaparinga Valley Road, Balhannah for a 10.00 am departure.

This time the route will be in an Easterly direction and touring some well and not so well used roads on the Eastern side of the ranges.

This Meander will finish as usual for a delicious Sprite Club lunch.

BYO morning tea/coffee, etc

Please let Russell and Judy know if you are attending for catering purposes – 0403 151 715


Many people in the Sprite Club ,motorsport and car clubs will know Steve Schmidt from Warragul: enthusiast, friend, editor and owner/driver of Cooper ‘S;’ Bugeye Sprite; FIAT 124AC coupe and Spyder. It is with great regret, shock and understandable sorrow that I am informing friends that Steve passed away suddenly at home last night.

Steve competed at various National Challenges, particularly the 2001 National Challenge at Mallala. His 948cc Red Bugeye was very competitive, including competing in the International Healey Commemorative Race at the 1998 Bathurst 1000.

Our thoughts are with the family and the Sprite Community at this time.
RIP, Steve.

Cars and Theirs Stars – 50th Anniversary

The April General Meeting for the past few years has been held at the Sporting Car Club rooms and has allowed the Sprite Club to display members cars on stage and have a chance to talk with their owners about the cars, their history and any special stories.

This years “Cars and Their Stars” night started with alarm bells and a police presence! Once the correct PIN code had been entered into the alarm system we could get the members and the cars into the venue. With the bar open and a few pizzas, the night started with members mingling and talking Sprites, Midgets and associated discussions.

President Gordon took to the stage and completed an abridged version of the Monthly Meeting. Once these formalities were completed it was time to get the “Stars” on stage to talk about their “Cars”. This year there was a 50th Anniversary theme, and cars that have had a long association with the Sprite Club were on show.

The Blue Bugeye of the King’s was first on stage. Starting as a Sprite body with a Holden 179 engine, and associated odd parts, the Sprite was restored in to a 1098cc powered Bugeye. Used for daily commutes, racing, motorkhanas the Bugeye was around from the very early days of the Club, and still attends various runs and events these days.

During its life SUS-600 has also has some transformations including the fitting of a Galant engine and gearbox, plus a few other creature comforts. It has also had the duties as a Learner Driver vehicle and featured in the 1977 SA Film Corporation movie “The Sound of Love”, starring John Jarratt (of Wolf Creek fame!). It even travelled four up (2 x adults, 2 x kids, plus camping gear) to Bordertown for the annual SA vs Vic motorkhana.

Next on stage was Des and Penny Chabrel and their Green MK IIIA Sprite. This also started off as a white vehicle which was used for a few years in the Riverland by a mate of President Gordon, and was also part of the Sprite Club during the mid-1980’s. Later dismantled for painting, Des and Penny purchased the Sprite and restored to it’s current glory. A coat of British Racing Green and a general tidy up has seen this Sprite attend many Sprite Club runs and All British Days over the past 35 years.

Des also described his and Penny’s other interest in motorcycle trails having competed and now official at the 24 hour Motorcycle Trial in the lower-mid North of the state.

The yellow Kestrel Clubman of Sean Power was the next car to review. With Clubbies SA having it’s 21st birthday last year, Sean explained the similar story of the early years where like minded people got together to talk all things Clubman. From this simple beginning grew Clubbies SA. Sprite Club members the Doube’s, Tye’s and Edson’s were part of this group and continue to own their Kestrel Clubman’s to this day.

Sean described the build of the Clubman, it’s first outing in the Grand Prix Rally , the speed events at both Mallala and Collingrove hill climb and other associated competition events. Being a SA designed car, Sean discussed the various engine configurations used in a number of the Kestrels (generally Toyota powered) and how each owner has added their own personal touch to their car.

Last on stage was the Red Bugeye of Grant Stephenson. Grant followed the usual path as a young man buying a sports car that was in need of restoration. He outlined the process of working with his fastidious father to form body panels and other parts to complete the body work before painting.

Joining the Sprite Club over 40 years ago (something he said he should have done during the restoration) Grant started attending various events including Sprints, motorkhanas and various social drives. The National Challenge was an important event on the calendar with Grant driving to the interstate event, competing, cleaning the Bugeye for the Concours, and then driving home!

Grant also outlined the latest engine rebuild and repainting of the engine bay which has taken longer than expected, but the Sprite is driving better then it ever did!

There were two other Sprites that unfortunately were unable to attend due to various issues. The Green MK III Sprite which has been in the custody of Reinhard Walker during the early 1970’s and was one of the very early cars to form the Sprite Club. Later John and Judy Bowering and now, Dean King have had the pleasure of owning this Sprite. Unfortunately dental problems prevented the Mk III from attending – days before the meeting – it lost teeth on first gear and decided to throw gear teeth out of the differential housing!

The other early Club vehicle was the Mk III owned by Kevin and Marilyn Warren. Kevin sold this Sprite to Dean Harty who used the car in the club for a few years, before transferring to Western Australia , where he still owns the Sprite. Dean was able to supply a few photos, with the car still displaying it’s Sprite Club of SA sticker on the windscreen, and the WA version of it’s original registration number – a nice touch to add to the history of this Sprite.

After a quick raffle draw, with an array of fine wines as prizes, the evening concluded with the President thanking the owners who brought their vehicles along for the night. Thanks were also passed on the Michael and Pat for arranging and serving the pizzas, and others for helping on the night,

Photos courtesy of Robin Dunk and Gordon Boyce.

April Bugeye Burble

Here is the April Bugeye Burble and Coming Events for the next few months………………………

Keep an eye on the Sprite Club Website, Email Postings and Sprite Club Facebook Page for more information…………

4th April General Meeting – Stars and Their Cars
Sporting Car Club of South Australia clubrooms

15th-18th April Easter Long Weekend

23rd/24th April All Historic Race Meeting – Mallala Motorsport Park
A true showcase of nostalgia celebrating 40 years of running this event.

1st May MSCA Peter Hall Memorial Six-Hour Relay Sprint – Mallala Motorsport Park
The Annual 6-Hour Regularity Relay attracts teams of cars from all MSCA Clubs, as well as interstate. There will be two Victorian Sprite Club teams joining in as well.

2nd May General Meeting – Meeting starts at 8.00pm.
Fullarton Park Community Centre, 411 Fullarton Road, Fullarton Park.

7th May Collingrove Hillclimb Challenge Trophy – Round 2

18th May Mid-Week Meander – Eastern Encircle
Missed the last one? – Mark your calendar NOW – Note revised date.

Mid-Week Meander – “Southern Saunter”

Wednesday 30th March – 9.30 for 10.00 am departure      

Russell and Judy Schmarr have organised the first Mid-Week Meander for 2022. This time it will be a planned “southern” run to enjoy the best the South can offer – great roads, great scenery and in the usual Schmarr style – we will take the long way there and the short run home!

Starting from Blackwood Railway Station East Side parking area, turn left just after crossing the railway line if coming from Blackwood, to arrive 9.30 for 10.00 am departure.

BYO Morning Tea.

Russell and Judy have also ensured there are no dirt roads this time!

Will end up at a lovely mystery lunch venue that will be suit all, particularly the female members of the Club.

Please let Russell and Judy know if you are attending for catering purposes – 0403 151 715

MSCA Super Sprint and Sprite Club 50th Celebrations

The Sprite Club of South Australia has had an affiliation with both the Marque Sports Car Association (SA) and Mallala Motor Sport Park for many of the Club’s 50 years. Therefore the Round One Super Sprint on Sunday March 20th was an ideal time to celebrate this affiliation.

With the Sprite Club down for flagging duties on the day, Club Members Grant Stephenson, Marcus Booth, Barry and Lyndall Edson and Gordon Boyce made there way to Mallala early for their briefing and duties. Grant and Marcus went to Turn 2, Barry and Lyndall to Turn 3 and Gordon assisted the Starter throughout the very warm day. There was a slight breeze, but all stated it was certainly warm trackside.

As part of our 50th Celebrations the Committee had contacted the MSCA about having a Car Display and Parade Laps. Meeting at the Cavan Hotel were Russell and Judy Schmarr, Robin Dunk and Steve Kent. Unfortunately Miles Jackson had some late minute Sprite issues so joined later in his “modern”. They all enjoyed their run to the circuit and added their cars to the display.

On the competition side, with over 80 cars entered, the Sprite Club was well represented with the Sprites of Chris Brine and Clive Spreadbury, the Plymouth Special of Gerard Miler, the Irukandji Clubman of Pat Miller, the Lotus Elan of David Tye and the Tiger Clubman of Lee Kernick. While the heat of the day put some added issues to a number of cars, various mechanical ailments affect the Sprite Club Team.

Chris Brine had fuel and clutch issues, Clive had starter motor troubles (it ended to two pieces) and loss of power, Pat and David had various issues with their cars, while Gerard and Lee continued to circulate throughout the day.

At the Lunch time break the Sprites assembled on the Start Finish line for some photos. While the number were less than expected the overall image was great. After the photos the members were given a chance to do some parade laps behind the Safety Car, For those who had not been on the circuit it was an opportunity to see the track from the drivers seat, Marcus Booth was also able to give his son his first real ride in his Mk III Sprite!

The Flag Officials returned to their posts for the afternoon session, some headed back to Adelaide and the competitors looked and tinkered or put their broken cars on the trailer for next time.

The Sprite Club would like to thank the MSCA for allowing and assisting with the display, Start Finish photo shoot and corresponding parade laps.

We would also like to thank those who helped Flagging on the day, it was certainly hot, but your services were appreciated by the competitors and the MSCA……….Thank You!

Thanks to Robin Dunk for some of the photos for this article.

Mallala Super Sprint and 50th Celebrations

Sunday 20th March

As previously advised we will be have a run and display at the MSCA Super Sprint Round One on Sunday 20th March.

We will be having a display of Sprites, Midgets and Associate Vehicles on the lawn behind the Control Tower and some parade laps of the Mallala Circuit during the lunch break.

There will be an opportunity to have the cars line up on the Start/Finish line for a group photo.

The run will meet at the Cavan Hotel Car Park, Port Wakefield Rd, Cavan at 10.00am for a 10.30am Departure.

Or you can head directly to the Mallala Circuit. We will be arriving approx 11.30 am

There is Canteen Facilities at the circuit or in Mallala or BYO Lunch, etc

Please note that there is to be no alcohol consumption in the Pit or Paddock Area.

As a number of the Committee are either on Flagging Duties (or in COVID Quarantine) we are requiring the assistance of some members to help on the day.

We need the following:

Someone to lead the Run from Cavan to Mallala.

Assit with marshalling the vehicles for the Parade Laps, etc

Can you please let President Gordon Boyce know on 0417 897 905 if you can assist with either of these

Also if you are intending to come for the Display and Parade laps an you please text Gordon on 0417 897 905 so we can gauge the numbers we are expecting. This will assist with our liaison with the MSCA Organisers.

MSCA Mallala Super Sprint and 50th Celebrations

Sunday 20th March

The Sprite Club of South Australia has had a long association with both the Marque Sports Car Association and Mallala Motorsport Park.

As part of our 50th Birthday Celebrations we will be having a Sprite Display at Mallala on Sunday 20th March in conjunction with the MSCA Super Sprint – Round 1.

The Sprite Club is also on flagging duties on the day so either:

Come and help with flagging and display your Sprite/Midget/Associate vehicle

Or drive up the late morning and enjoy the day – bring a picnic lunch and enjoy the competition –Please note there is to be no alcohol consumption in the Pit or Paddock area

The display will be located behind the Control Tower

We have also arranged some parade laps of the circuit at the lunchtime break and having a photoshoot on the Start/Finish Line – Subject to the MSCA and the organisation on the day

Meeting at 10.00am for a 10.30am departure – Meeting Venue to be confirmed

More details will be provided for the meeting venue for the Morning Run next week

March Bugeye Burble

Here is the March Bugeye Burble and Coming Events for the next few months………………………

Keep an eye on the Sprite Club Website, Email Postings and Sprite Club Facebook Page for more information…………

7th March General Meeting – Meeting starts at 8.00pm.
Fullarton Park Community Centre, 411 Fullarton Road, Fullarton Park.

20th March MSCA Mallala Super Sprint – Round 1 – Mallala Motorsport Park
The Sprite Club have been rostered for flagging duties at this Round so please come along and get yourself trackside to see some motorsport action up close.
Officials briefing at 8.30am. You will be supplied lunch and basic training.
Please support our competing Sprite/Midget and Clubman driving members as they compete. On track action from 10.00am

27th March The 10th Anniversary British Classics Tour 2022 – Old Noarlunga to Victor Harbour
For more information and entries:

27th March Collingrove Hillclimb Challenge Trophy – Round 1

30th March Mid-Week Meander – “Southern Saunter” – 9.30 for 10.00 am departure
This time it will be a planned “south” run to start from Blackwood Railway Station East side parking area, to arrive 9.30 for 10.00 am departure.
BYO Morning Tea. Will end up at a lovely mystery lunch venue.

4th April General Meeting – Stars and Their Cars – “50 years of Sprites and Midgets”
Sporting Car Club, 51 King William Road, Unley. – 6.30pm Start
Please note a different venue and the earlier start time.
We will have some 50th member’s cars on stage and have a Q & A with the owners.