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19-24 MARCH 2004

Even though the lovely roads of the misty Magoebaskloof hills were calling repeatedly and plaintively, the call of Kyalami Race Track was louder. And so, only nine lonely but spirited Porsches set out to answer the Tzaneen challenge. This brave little convoy screeched all the way to Magoebaskloof, the toll gates serving as excellent starting blocks for mini drag races. Sadly, a certain 911 Pearl White Turbo's clutch could not withstand the 400 horse power torque. Consequently, an even sadder gentleman limped around the hills for the rest of the weekend, changing gears without a clutch. This, however, did not deter him from taking on a BMW up Magoebaskloof Pass – all in second gear! On the last evening he was presented with a wooden mortar and pestle, which bears a remarkable resemblance to a very loose gear lever!

As this stalwart organizer had to contend with not only a clashing date on the Porsche Calendar, but a burnt down Magoebaskloof Hotel as well, accommodation had to be organized on local recommendation. Fortunately, the Fairview River Lodge turned out to be just perfect. The beautiful location and setting served us well and the staff proved to be very friendly and were very accommodating. Even a large screen TV was organized, during the Sunday Morning Breakfast, for the viewing of the Malaysian Grand Prix! Plenty was said and shouted by the Porsche Club members as the race progressed towards the finish and breakfast at the pub.

Wonderful entertainment was arranged at the Fairview River Lodge swimming pool, under the tropical palm trees, on the Saturday evening. The Porsche Club members were treated to the antics of a totally convincing thoroughbred Scotsman, who, during his first break, came round to the tables and shattered everybody by introducing himself as none other than a 'regte, egte' "Sarel Snyman". Other similar fun evenings were provided by the 'ever-ready' Gary at the Pot and Plough and the equally 'ever-ready' Heather at the Sunland Baobab Tree and Pub.

A highlight of the weekend was definitely being escorted with full traffic police sirens through the town center by the local traffic officers and then parking in splendor in front of the Tzaneen Civic Center. Porsche owners also enjoyed the irony of being judged by the local traffic officers for the "Show and Shine." The MacDonalds really wowed the cops, attaining full marks in almost every category and accordingly being awarded the much coveted 'Show and Shine" trophy. Much amusement was caused by one of the local youngster who loudly called his Mom and told her to hurry to the civic center because "all the Ferraris had arrived!"

This particular long weekend fell during a period of rain and more rain, but the heavens seemed to take note of this special posse of Porsche people that proceeded to the mountains despite all the setbacks, and called, "hold!" The sunset cruise on the Ebenezer Dam took place in the calm, twilight glory. The potjiekos and prize-giving evening was granted a star lit sky (even though we slid to the venue around the biggest Boabab Tree in mud for at least the last 300 metres!) Similarly, the skies cleared to allow for peaceful and pleasant strolls in the King's Walden Homestead gardens after the three course lunch on the stoep while the soft rain drizzled down until the end of the apricot and cream deserts. Even the crocs at Agatha Crocodile Farm lunged for their lunch in brief warm morning sunshine!

Amazing, as always, are the members of the Porsche club. Yet again, a group of people, virtually the only common denominator among them being their cars, set out to have fun together and they certainly went 'red line' doing so! Special mention needs to be made of Joey Nel and her wayward partner,Vellia Hurter, who won the spirit trophy. Go girls! You will be remembered for when you have problems with the hotel management about rising wine prices as they then replied with the phrase " move over skattie "

A good Porsche mix of Turbo and natural aspirated engines was found alongside the various air-cooled and water cooled Porsche engines together with the front engine and rear engine mountings as used by Porsche over the last few years.

Thank you also to the following members who made this such a memorable weekend:

Adrian Batchelor Adams and Nicky
Philip Du Preez and Beth
Nick Haywood and Sylvia
David MacDonald and Cynthia
Manfred Schafer and Ursula
Christo Stander and Nicky
Brian Viljoen and Nan
Christo Vlok and Ria

It is during these week-end trips and tours that the Porsche Club members really get to know each other and the way they drive cars on the open road and in the mountain passes. The local entertainer Sarel Snyman will vouch this for for years to come.

We look forward to seeing these and other members at the Swaziland Week-end, as well as next year's event to the Drakensberg mountains in the lovely and surprising Lowveld .