Automotive

McLaren Vale’s beloved motoring event in jeopardy in lieu of founders exit

The McLaren Vale Vintage & Classic event could be set to end after Founder and Chairman, Trevor Sharp, announced his retirement, with the organisation now calling for a new lead for the annual parade.

The McLaren Vale Vintage & Classic event could be set to end after Founder and Chairman, Trevor Sharp, announced his retirement, with the organisation now calling for a new lead for the annual parade.

Since the first event in 2006, the McLaren Vale Vintage & Classic has developed a strong history within the region and has benefitted from a dedicated and experienced team of volunteer organisers.

The McLaren Vale Business & Tourism Association, which oversees the V&C sub-committee, is now looking for a passionate individual to lead this team in 2023 and beyond, thus ensuring its viability and future.

Formed by Trevor Sharp, with invaluable help from his wife Sandra, the popular motoring event began with around 50 cars and only a handful of spectators along the main road.

The most recent event, in 2021, saw more than 600 vintage and classic motor vehicles, and between 15 and 20 thousand spectators lining the main road to view the spectacle.

Trevor Sharp explained his decision to step down from the position, and why he is eager to get someone else on board:

“After many incredible years of working tirelessly to make the McLaren Vale Vintage & Classic one of best community events in the area, it’s time for me to retire and enjoy the next phase of my life with my wife, Sandra,” Trevor said.

“This free event not only brings the McLaren Vale community together, but also brings lovers of motor vehicles, and the wider public, into the streets, businesses and wineries of McLaren Vale…To see the event grow each year like it has is unbelievable and has been a reflection of its popularity,” Trevor continued.

“When all the cafes, restaurants and wineries in McLaren Vale heard that the V&C may no longer have a future, they were extremely disappointed…this event has been one of the biggest days on their calendar and one that the community and wider South Australian public have enjoyed, so it would be a shame for it to end. That’s why we are desperately wanting to find someone else to continue its legacy,” Trevor explained.

Originally set up to bring people into the region, it has also been one of the region’s largest fundraisers: the annual Charity Dinner, introduced in 2011, and the Auction, introduced in 2013, have collectively raised approximately $92,000 over the years for the local community and some charities, including the McLaren Vale & Districts War Memorial Hospital, the Mason Minniss Fund, Southern Koala & Echidna Rescue and the local CFS brigades.

Notable guests from the motoring fraternity who have attended as guest speakers at the Charity Dinners over the years include Ed Ordynski, Vern Schuppan, John Stoneham, Jeremy Burgess, Larry Perkins, Alan Jones, Colin Bond, John Bowe, and Craig Lowndes.

To keep this community event alive, expressions of interest can be made to Trevor by contacting him on 0415 820 719.

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