Castlemaine Model Auto Show

I ventured up towards Bendigo on the long weekend to have a look at the Castlemaine Model Auto Show at Autopia, the re-purposed tech school, on March 13.

The day almost started in disaster a few kilometres out of town, having to take avoiding action as a light blue hot rod/bucket wandered half way out of a t-intersection into our path. I’m not sure if he was having trouble pulling the thing up, or just didn’t look until too late, but I’m thankful there was no traffic coming the other way!

Hot Rods galore – on the table and in the car park.

I wasn’t expecting a huge show like Model Expo at Sandown, but I did expect it to be a bit bigger than it was, particularly since word is there have been so many new models built during the various covid lockdowns.

The $5 per adult admission price was fair and reasonable, and there were several other displays of interesting things I wasn’t expecting, such as a room full of billy carts and billy cart paraphernalia (it’s a thing in Castlemaine, an annual event with a long history), photo gallery of speed record runs, plus a range of old ski and race boats.

An entire room was dedicated to Castlemaine’s billy cart history

I would like to have had more time to view the hot rods and custom cars, but they were arriving as I was leaving, so I – and I am sure others – missed checking out some really cool cars due to them turning up well after the scheduled start time.

But no biggie – my only reason to attend was for the models.

Castlemaine is the self-proclaimed hot rod capital of Australia, so it should come as no surprise these represented the majority of builds on display – rods and customs.

Miniature Hot Rod magazine on the seat of a model hot rod.

In my eyes, quality was a real mix. There were some really good builds among the tables, but also a couple of what I’d describe as a little average for a public show and competition. But I guess the main thing is the builders are happy with them, and the show needed every item it could get.

All in all, an enjoyable and worthwhile event with a few extra surprises in a beautiful part of the country.

So, now the Castlemaine show has been ticked off the list, where to next…?

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